A Longside man has successfully completed his four-week Army Reserve basic training course in Edinburgh.
The move sees Army Signaller Arran Crouch (22), realise his ambition to join 2 Signal Squadron 38th Royal Signal Regiment.
A former pupil of Mintlaw Academy, Arran was selected for the Army Reserve only a few weeks before the course.
A third year student at Aberdeen University studying chemistry, with an ambition to pursue a career in space science, Arran admits it was an exciting time preparing for the course in such a short space of time but was well worth it.
Former part-time sports shop assistant, Arran said: “I wanted to join to be part of a team and because I thought it would be a lot more rewarding than working in a shop.
“I also gained some essential key skills such as discipline and courage; so far I have not been disappointed, I am loving it.”
A keen golfer, being in the university golf team and having won numerous Junior Club Championships, Arran likes to keep himself fit with martial arts.
Arran continues: “Exercise Summer Challenge provides the opportunity to complete the Army Reserve basic training in four weeks.
“This course is for people who are free of other commitments during the summer months.
“It is an intense course where recruits learn both mental and practical military skills. These include progressive personal fitness, learning to handle and fire the SA80 A2 rifle, first aid, navigational skills, marching, nuclear, radiological, radiological and chemical (NRBC) protection and living out in ‘field’ conditions.”
Throughout the course the Army’s values and standards underpin all the training.
“The course is focused on encouraging selfless commitment, respect for others, loyalty, integrity, moral and physical courage and self discipline.
This year’s Exercise Summer Challenge is the first Army Reserve recruit course to be taught by the regular training staff from Army Training Centre in Pirbright.
It demonstrates the Army’s commitment for the One Army Recruiting policy where Army Reserves and Regulars are recruited and trained to the same standard and then deployed as a united force.
Army Training Centre (ATC) Pirbright is about 30 miles west of London. It delivers Phase 1 Training for new recruits joining the Army Air Corps, Royal Regiment of Artillery, Royal Corps of Signals, Royal Logistic Corps, Adjutant ,General’s Corps, Royal Army Medical Corps and the Intelligence Corps.