News

May 5th 2016

Experiencing the Altcar Challenge

350 Field Squadron reservists at the Altcar Challenge

Seven Reservists from 350 Field Squadron (EOD), Royal Engineers, gave up their May bank holiday weekend to compete and assist with the running of an infantry skills competition.

The Altcar Challenge Patrol Competition took place from 29 April to 1 May in Liverpool and saw the Nottingham-based reservists from 350 Field Squadron join colleagues from around the country from each military service to compete in a series of timed exercises.

The annual event, which is now in its 32nd year, included a series of scenarios focussed around navigation; assault courses; battlefield first aid, shooting, observation and counter Improvised Explosive Device (IED) activities as well as an exercise testing the reservists’ firefighting techniques.

This year saw 350 Field Squadron enter a largely inexperienced team of four reservists but what they lacked in experience, they made up in enthusiasm and teamwork, allowing them to achieve the highest score on the counter IED activity and the joint highest score on three other tasks.

Sapper Todd Franklin, aged 27, who lives in Nottingham, was a part of 350 Field Squadron’s team. He said: “The patrol competition allowed me to expose both my strengths and weaknesses in a competitive environment. It was interesting to get a chance to work alongside teams from the Navy, RAF and others from overseas as this is something I had not experienced before.”

Staff Sergeant John Dye, Altcar Committee Chairman, said: “The stands and scenarios are divided between each military service to provide a challenge to the teams who may not have had experience of their work before. Some of the tasks are completed by competing teams having to work together to achieve the objective.”

350 Field Squadron (EOD) are already looking forward to taking part in the competition again next year and would like to challenge anyone to step up and join their ranks in various paid part time roles. To find out more contact: 33ENGR-350-WO-RRMT@MOD.UK

"It was interesting to get a chance to work alongside teams from the Navy, RAF and others from overseas as this is something I had not experienced before.”