February 7th 2018

Meet the new CO of 158 Regiment (RLC)

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Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Gifford

At the start of January a new Commanding Officer took charge of 158 Regiment The Royal Logistic Corps (RLC).

His name is Lieutenant Colonel Andrew Gifford and like the vast majority of soldiers in 158 Regiment (RLC) he is a reservist, so only fulfils his duties as Commanding Officer on a part time basis.

Speaking about why he took on the role, Andrew said: “Command is a privilege, it is seen as the most desirable professional position for a soldier whether regular or reserve and therefore Commanding Officer is the pinnacle of most people’s careers.

“The Regiment is probably one of the best Regiments, if not the best Regiment I’ve ever had the privilege to work with. It’s the professional nature of the Regiment that really drew me in to taking on the command appointment.”

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Andrew undertaking adventurous training.

Andrew is a part time reservist but has retired from his civilian career, he explained: “I did 30 years in the police where I worked for Hampshire constabulary and I was involved in all aspects of policing.

Andrew has had a long and varied career within the Army Reserve, he said: “I joined the reserves back in 1988, I had to do project whilst I was a new police officer and mine was on the Royal Military Police based in Aldershot, as a result of that I joined them.

“I was quite taken by the opportunity to learn to ride horses, so I rode with the Royal Military Police mounted troop back in the day. My main interest was to do something in addition to my public service career.”

Andrew continued: “For me personally, I’m looking to develop the Regiment and our soldiers are the best recruiters, people see them shine, they see them get promoted and they see their incredible sporting achievements. Our soldiers become the role models that encourages others to join.”

Andrew has been on numerous tours throughout his long career as an Army reservist including helping plan and undertake the withdrawal from Afghanistan and a tour in which he supported the United Nations in Cyprus.  

While talking about his role in Cyprus Andrew explained: “I was a military observer liaison officer and that was quite an interesting job. My policing skills helped me undertake that role, it was very much a policing role. It was a challenging but enjoyable time.

“I think operational tours are the real highlight within my reservist career, because you are putting in to practice all the training and skills that you’ve learnt and you’re putting them to focus in an operational environment.”

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Andrew during one of his tours.

Explaining why he thinks others should join the Army Reserves, Andrew said: “The challenge, the ability to give back to the community, it’s as Churchill described being a reservist is being twice the citizen and it may be an old fashioned notion but the idea is that you give something else back to your community other than your regular work.”

“The Regiment is probably one of the best Regiments, if not the best Regiment I’ve ever had the privilege to work with."