Firsts in Finland for the Royal Lancers

Soldiers from D-Squadron, The Royal Lancers have spent May deployed alongside the Finnish Army on Exercise Arrow 19, where they have provided reconnaissance for a Finnish Armoured Infantry Brigade.

This is the first ever deployment of both the CVR(T) Scimitar vehicle and the Regiment to Finland and has provided an opportunity to practice crucial interoperability with partners in Europe. With this deployment the Royal Lancers have demonstrated the British Army’s global reach and presence throughout the world. “It’s been a fantastic deployment – in a training environment that we are the first British soldiers to ever use” said Lt Charlie Mackaness, a Troop Leader with D Sqn. “The Fins have been fiercely professional and brilliant hosts. Training with them has allowed us to adjust our own tactics, gain an understanding of their way of warfighting  and bond with fellow soldiers from across the world.”

The exercise, which included participants from the US Marine Corps, US Army and Estonia, has also allowed the Regiment to prove and demonstrate the expeditionary capability of their platform. At home in the narrow forest tracks of Finland, the reconnaissance soldiers have constantly been able to outmanoeuvre the simulated enemy, calling the allied infantry onto targets and then vanishing back in the pine forests.

This has been a second overseas deployment for the Regiment in less than 12 months, with many members having returned from Cyprus on Op Tosca in October 2019 and coincides with two other Lancer squadrons exercising in Germany and a fourth in Scotland concurrently.