More than 650 teenagers marched on their way to a new career when they graduated from the Army’s flagship training establishment for 16-17 year olds on February 13, 2020, watched by HRH Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex.
The Prince was in attendance at The Army Foundation College in Harrogate as the Queen’s representative and as the Senior Inspecting Officer. He inspected the junior soldiers, presented prizes and took the salute as the military parade passed the dais.
The College at Uniacke Barracks in Penny Pot Lane, Harrogate, runs two types of course – a 42-week long course and a shorter 22-week course both of which train junior soldiers destined for a wide variety of Army careers.
The junior soldiers on the longer 42-week course will march off the square to the second phase of their training in the Infantry, Royal Artillery, Royal Armoured Corps and Royal Logistic Corps.
A company of junior soldiers on the shorter 22-week course designed for other cap badges will head for the longer more specialised phase of their training which could include being a vehicle mechanic with the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers to becoming a communications system operator with the Royal Signals.
The courses both provide a unique combination of military basic training and vocational training to the junior soldiers. The graduation parade at Uniacke Barracks will be the finale and hundreds of relatives and friends are expected to watch the junior soldiers graduate.
The college opened in 1988 and accommodates 1,344 junior soldiers.