October 9th 2014


A Reserve soldier from Loughborough, recently travelled to Sennelager in Germany for his annual training camp where he undertook various training packages designed to test his and his fellow reserves in their core tasks of logistic support and providing essential supplies.


Corporal John Furie, who serves with 158 Regiment, Royal Logistic Corps spent the first part of the exercise, called LEOPARD STAR 1, defending a mock harbour area with his colleagues which came under indirect fire attack. The aim of this part of the exercise was to test their reactions and command tasks.

The importance of these essential military exercises was something that John can testify to having only returned from a deployment to Afghanistan earlier this year where as part of the Combat Logistic Patrol (CLP) troop they had to deal with improvised explosive devises on several occasions.

Speaking of his experience John remarked: “I was a Section Commander with the CLP responsible for 8 soldiers and about 5 trucks and we were travelling out to the outlying Forward Operational Bases and bringing equipment back into Camp Bastion as the drawdown began. Every day presented a new challenge, but I found the whole experience really beneficial and rewarding and it really helped with my leadership skills.”

For John who works for the Highways on motorway maintenance the skills he is learning in the Reserves are also helping with the development of his civilian employment. As he said: “as well gaining in self-confidence and leading people I have gained many qualifications which I have used to good effect in my job and I am now looking at management and teaching courses. Being in the Reserves has given me the drive and confidence to try new things.” John has also previously deployed to Cyprus with the Reserves.

Commenting on the Exercise Lieutenant Colonel Mike Hughes, Commanding Officer of 158 Regt said: “As we enter into a period of contingency operations the aim of this exercise is for us to ensure that our soldiers are properly prepared and trained to a standard confident in the knowledge that we can hand them to our paired Regiment knowing they will be able to undertake any task asked of them.

Whilst it is still early in the revision stage of the exercise early signs are promising this will be achieved as everyone is committed, enthusiastic, reliable and determined to succeed –characteristics I would say are attractive and advantageous to any employer.

The Reserves has so much to offer; there are so many transferable skills that an individual can take back into civilian employment and it presents an opportunity to serve and work with like-minded people. If someone is considering joining I would say you have nothing to lose by trying, if you don’t you may regret it later on in life.”

158 Regt has Reserve Centres in Bedford, Peterborough, Ipswich and Loughborough and under Army 2020 will be paired with 7 Regiment, RLC.