Basic Training

ATC Pirbright

Army Training Centre Pirbright

Army Training Centre Pirbright delivers the 14 week training course known as the Common Military Syllabus which is completed by all adult recruits when they join the Army.

ATC Pirbright Promo



Army Training Centre (ATC) Pirbright is about 30 miles west of London, close to the towns of Aldershot and Guildford. 

ATC Pirbright delivers the 14 week training course known as the Common Military Syllabus which is completed by all adult recruits (age 17+) when they join the Army. The course is designed to develop the individual and team skills in a progressive manner, preparing recruits for their Initial Trade Training, where they learn the specific skills for their chosen Army trade.

ATC Pirbright delivers Phase 1 Training for new recruits joining:

Army Air Corps, Army Medical Services, Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, Corps of Royal Engineers, Corps of Army Music, Royal Armoured Corps, Royal Regiment of Artillery, Royal Corps of Signals, Royal Logistic Corps, Adjutant General’s Corps, Intelligence Corps.


What you'll learn

Those coming to ATC Pirbright will be taught and trained on a variety of military aspects.

  • Fieldcraft
  • Skill at Arms
  • Fitness training
  • Qualities of a soldier
  • Military knowledge
  • Battlefield casualty drills
  • Individual health
  • Education

Weeks 1-7

The key events over the 14 week CMS are as follows:

Week 1: Attestation (a formal ceremony to join the British Army), kit issue, administration and Exercise Icebreaker (Teaching Exercise) - your first night in the field.

Week 2: Weapons training, introduction to foot drill and Military Swim Test.

Week 3: Weapon training, physical development and practical map reading.

Week 4: Weapon Handling Test, introduction to Live Firing and Platoon Commanders Activity Day.

Week 5: Two nights in the field on Exercise First Nights (Teaching Exercise), bayonet fighting and first aid training.

Week 6: Live firing, Chemical/Biological/Nuclear/Radiation training.

Week 7: Phase 2 Visits (a chance to see where you are going next and meet others like you who have already passed out), foot drill test, families’ day (a chance for your family to come and visit you) and a long weekend.

Weeks 8-14

The second part of the course continues with more exciting, challenging and ultimately rewarding training. It’s a proud moment for all involved when the course ends and the Pass Off Parade takes place.

Week 8: Three nights in the field on Exercise Halfway (Teach and Test Exercise).

Week 9: A trip to Ypres on Exercise Valiant Spirit (Realities of War).

Week 10: Adventurous training in Wales (caving, climbing, canoeing and hill walking), map reading practical and written tests.

Week 11: One night in the field on the Section Commanders’ Fieldcraft Exercise, counter-IED training and physical fitness tests.

Week 12: Annual Combat Marksmanship Test (ACMT) and Close Quarter Marksmanship training.

Week 13: Four nights in the field on Exercise Final Fling, practising all of the skills learned over the course.

Week 14: Arms drill and final administration ahead of a prestigious passing out parade in front of family, friends and unit representatives.

Phase One (Bravo)

The two-week Phase One (Bravo) course at ATC Pirbright is designed to be the climax of an Army Reserve recruit’s training. He or she is considered a trained soldier after completing their TSC(B) course.

All Army Reserve soldiers complete basic training. For Regional Units, training is completed in two parts:

  • six modular Trained Soldier Course (Alpha) (TSC(A)) weekends at a Regional Training Centre
  • followed by this two-week Phase One (Bravo) in which recruits are trained and mentored by expert Regular Army staff

Basic training is designed to teach everything an Army Reserve recruit needs to know to become an effective soldier and fulfil their role within the Army Reserve – from military terminology, drill and how to wear uniform, to physical fitness, weapon handling, first aid, field craft and map reading.

The course is intense, challenging and enjoyable. It concludes – for those who pass – with a prestigious Passing Out Parade in front of family, friends and unit representatives.