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Lance Corporal Damien Barnard, 2 Royal Welsh, has been in the Army for just three years, yet has done courses on everything from teaching to being a sniper, and is currently learning to be a fitness instructor. “I’ve done a lot of courses, not all connected to my normal job. I did a Snipers course – it was intense – it’s the second hardest course in the Army.”


Having done two tours of Iraq, Damien knows how important it is to stay focused on operations: “On operations or even in battle, you’re always switched on. It’s like any normal job I suppose – when you’re training you don’t have to be perfect, but when you’re in the heart of the action you have to be the best you can be. You become a tight group when you’re fighting next to someone you might not even know very well.”
on operations


The 2 Royal Welsh Regiment is an extremely tight-knit group, which Damien puts down to the fact most of the group were born and bred in Wales: “One of the biggest reasons for the closeness and pride within this regiment is the fact that 90 per cent of us live in South Wales – it’s genuinely like one big family. As a Welsh speaker, I feel a great deal of pride in that. There are quite a few Welsh speakers in the regiment.”
on operations


When Damien needs some down time, he looks forward to adventurous training in the Brecon Beacons. “You can get civilian-recognised qualifications through the Army’s adventurous training, but it’s also an opportunity for relaxing and some fun time away from the barracks. Canoeing was one of the best things I’ve done – seeing some of the boys falling into the lake was great.”


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