News

June 18th 2015

HMS Sherwood Reservist takes part in multi-national training exercise

A Reservist from HMS Sherwood, the East Midlands only Royal Naval Reserve unit, has taken part in a multi-national training exercise on board a Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) Ship.

Lieutenant Hattie Jacques, aged 35, who lives in Long Eaton, took part in Exercise Joint Warrior aboard RFA Lyme Bay. The exercise involved colleagues from the Royal Navy, Royal Marines and the Army and involved both Regular (full-time) service personnel and Reservists from both the UK and overseas over a two-week period.

Exercise Joint Warrior provided an environment in which UK, NATO and allied units can go through training together for use in combined joint task force situations. The exercise included a range of scenarios such as conflict and crisis circumstances, which could be potentially encountered in operations.

Hattie joined the Royal Naval Reserve (RNR) to serve at sea so embraces every opportunity to do this. She explained: “My RNR specialisation is Amphibious Warfare which means I’m trained to carry out operations where land borders the sea, offloading troops safely ashore with all kit and equipment.

“It was great to be able to put my skills into practice on the RFA, which I’ve never sailed in before.  It was great to see how the ship operates and what it is capable of. The exercise allowed colleagues from a range of specialisations and other Services to come together, as part of one of the largest military training exercises in Europe.”

Hattie has previously served on other Amphibious Assault Ships including HMS Bulwark, HMS Albion, HMS Ocean and the aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious, although Hattie explained that experiencing time on-board a RFA vessel was interesting as the ship is not a warship, but is operated by the Ministry of Defence Civil Service in support of the Royal Navy.

Hattie continued: “I was an Amphibious Watch Keeper on board the ship and was in place to oversee timings and how the people and supplies on board would get ashore safely. I helped to coordinate more than 300 Marines leaving the ship to go ashore; this tested all of the vital skills needed in a potential operational situation such as this.

“Exercises like this are key events on our training calendars. To be able to take part in such a well-organised multi-national exercise was an experience I will remember for a long time.”

The exercise took place primarily across Scotland from 11 to 24 April 2015.

To find out more about joining HMS Sherwood call 07818 017825 or email navymr-sherwoodsm@mod.uk.

"It was great to see how the ship operates and what it is capable of. The exercise allowed colleagues from a range of specialisations and other Services to come together, as part of one of the largest military training exercises in Europe.”