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‘So much to do in the Army Reserve I don’t want to miss a thing’

Lance Corporal Troy Viner found so many exciting opportunities with the Army Reserve after graduating from university he decided to delay seeking a civilian job.

Troy, aged 23, didn’t want to put himself in a position where he would have to say no to any of the wide range of experiences on offer.

He joined the University of London Officer Training Corps while studying for BSc in Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation at the University of Bedfordshire.

But when the Covid-19 pandemic made travelling in and out of London too difficult, he transferred to the Royal Yeomanry as a soldier in Leicester-based E Squadron and never looked back.

...there’s such a range of things to get involved in." Lance Corporal Troy Viner,
Royal Yeomanry

Troy said: “Since I finished university, I have found so many things to do with the Army Reserve that I haven’t sought out a civilian job. I am incredibly lucky to be in the Royal Yeomanry where there’s such a range of things to get involved in."

“Because of this, I have tried to keep my life quite flexible and not tie myself down while I’m young so that I don’t find myself in a position where I am saying no to the exciting opportunities the Army Reserve offers.”

Pursuing new challenges and developing his core soldiering skills, Troy is currently deployed in Poland with the Royal Lancers on Operation Cabrit, the UK deployment in Eastern Europe where British troops lead a multinational Battlegroup as part of the enhanced Forward Presence (eFP).

I have enjoyed this deployment so much... I will be joining the Royal Lancers full-time."

Originally from Camberley, the former Tomlinscote School and Sixth Form College pupil, said: “It has been a brilliant experience. Serving at the forefront of NATO on an enduring operation is both an honour and privilege and I feel incredibly lucky to be here.

“Working with other nations – the Croatian, Romanian, US, and Polish armies - has been fascinating and very culturally engaging."

"I have enjoyed this deployment so much that, when I return, I will be joining the Royal Lancers as a full-time soldier on a permanent basis."

“When in the Royal Lancers I am keen to undertake my Crew Commanders’ course and develop more military specialisms.”

As a vehicle crew member on a Jackal armoured vehicle, his main role is driver, also responsible for its maintenance. This involves all checks before and after movement, conducting repairs while on the go and liaising with REME (Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers) colleagues for anything he can’t fix.

Previously, Troy has taken part in a regimental exercise in Gibraltar with the Royal Yeomanry, where they developed their fighting in built up areas (FIBUA) skills. He has also travelled to Cyprus for a live fire tactical training package with fellow Reservists from the Scottish and Northern Irish Yeomanry.

When we finished our final company attack, we could look out from the Rock and see the Moroccan coast."

“Not only was it good fun,” he said, “but also extremely rewarding professionally, as I had only recently promoted when I went there."

“The final exercise was a highlight. When we finished our final company attack, we could look out from the Rock and see the Moroccan coast."

“Out of uniform, I have also travelled to both Switzerland and France to ski with the Army and been to Belgium on a battlefield study.”

Recently, Troy played with fellow Royal Lancers at a beach rugby tournament in Sopot, Poland, where they finished third, and he’s learned to ski with the Army over a four-week adventure training expedition

“I have also got into playing volleyball with my US Army colleagues on Op Cabrit and competed in orienteering events within the Military League South,” he added.

“In addition to the obvious core soldiering skills, the Army has taught me the fundamentals of teamwork, and how to problem solve while under pressure.”

Among the highlights of his career so far has been winning a silver medal on Cambrian Patrol, the premier patrolling event of the British Army, held in Wales, made up of eight phases, each of 48 hours over 10 days.

From being well supported in the challenge of juggling university studies with Reserve commitments, to his ambition of deploying next summer with the Royal Lancers on Operation Elgin - NATO’s intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance operation to support peace and stability in the Balkans - his service has been and promises to continue to be life changing.

I couldn’t think of a better line of work."

Troy, who now lives in North Curry, Somerset, said: “It has certainly changed my professional outlook. I am much more confident operating as part of a team, and I hesitate a lot less when interesting opportunities present themselves."

“Soldiers always drum on about the number of opportunities the Army provides, and I didn’t fully realise or appreciate how many things there are for soldiers to learn in the Army."

“I have grown professionally and personally, learning everything from how to live self-sufficiently, to how to drive a lorry."

“I was always interested in the Army, as I think a lot of young people are, but I joined because I couldn’t think of a better line of work that provided a young person with such good opportunities to travel and do out of the ordinary things which most people wouldn’t normally get to do.”

The British Army is recruiting right now to fill 10,000 jobs across the UK with more than 200 roles to choose from, covering everything from frontline combat and cyber security to helicopter pilots, chefs and support roles. If you’re aged 16 to 50, and if you want to find out more about a career in the Army, click here.

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