News

June 18th 2015

Royal Naval Reservist: “You get out what you put in to your Reservist role”

A Reservist, who lives in Hucknall, is taking part in Reserves Day on 24 June to raise awareness about the Armed Forces.

Unit Coxswain Sam Martin, aged 45, joined HMS Sherwood, the East Midlands’ only Royal Naval Reserve unit, 28 years ago but this is the first time she has taken part in the event, that was formally known as Uniform to Work Day.

Sam explained: “I decided to take part in Reserves Day to raise awareness about the benefits that being a Reservist can bring personally to individuals, and how Reserves are generally an important part of our Armed Forces community.”

As well as being a Reservist, Sam works full time as a civil servant based at Chetwynd Barracks in Nottingham as part of the British Army’s 170 (Infrastructure Support) Engineer Group. She continued: “170 Engineer Group is a hybrid unit that includes both regular soldiers and Reservists, so my knowledge of how the Reserve Forces operate really helps me in my day job.

“Being a part of HMS Sherwood has allowed me to do things I never would have dreamed of before. I have travelled to Norway; Mexico; Djibouti; Panama; America and the Virgin Islands, all of which were an experience of a lifetime. It probably sounds like an unusual thing to say but being Reservist has made me a different person, who has a different outlook on life.”

Reflecting on why she originally joined HMS Sherwood, Sam continued: “My sister was originally in the Reserve Forces but I had a completely different lifestyle at the time which involved socialising a lot. My dad said that I should ‘take a leaf out of my sister’s book’ and do something positive with my free time. So, I joined the Royal Naval Reserve thinking I would hate it, but 28 years later I am still there, and my initial thoughts about why I would dislike being a Reservist have all been erased.

“I have met some fantastic people I now like to call friends, and truly believe that you get out what you put in to your Reservist role. I’m now looking forward to being promoted to a Warrant Officer Class One in March next year.”

Paul Duggan, Deputy Chief of Staff at 170 Engineer Group, is Sam’s line manager. Explaining why he is happy to support Reserves Day, he said: “One of the biggest advantages of Sam being a Reservist herself is that she brings a further knowledge of both the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and military systems in to her civilian workplace.

“Sam has attended a number of MOD courses that have benefitted both roles including a recent equality and diversity course. Being a Reservist is a part of our everyday business so we are more than happy to support Sam in wearing her uniform into work as part of Reserves Day”.

To learn more about joining HMS Sherwood contact 0115 929 6373 or email navymr-sherwoodsm@mod.uk

“I decided to take part in Reserves Day to raise awareness about the benefits that being a Reservist can bring personally to individuals, and how Reserves are generally an important part of our Armed Forces community."