Fenland students get a taste of army life and become soldiers for a week

FENLAND students became soldiers for five days when they visited an Army training base.

The uniformed services department at the College of West Anglia organised the trip to Bassingbourn Barracks so students could sample the life of an Army recruit.

Most of the uniformed students came from the Isle Campus in Wisbech with an additional eight from King’s Lynn.

Uniformed Services tutor Adrian Kent who is based at the Isle campus accompanied the group. He said: “It was a very good week. Everyone felt that the five days spent with the Army training team was extremely demanding. However, all derived a great sense of pride and achievement at being told the students had performed outstandingly.”

Mr Kent said the visit was intense and within 20 minutes of arrival at the barracks the students were off on a one and half mile timed airfield run. The run was followed by students performing timed exercises.

March student Jordan Thatcher, 17, said: “I really enjoyed the week, and I definitely recommend it to other young people. It gave me a better insight into the Army. We did lots of team-building events.”

Student Ryan Murphy from Wisbech added: “I wasn’t interested in going into the Army, but this experience made me seriously think about joining.”

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During their stay the students took part in a host of activities including tactics for moving across country in formation and coming under fire, combat first aid, minefield extraction, cooking field rations and putting up a shelter.

The soldier experience ended with a cold overnight stop out where all the newly acquired skills could be put into action.

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