Soldier under Training (SuT) Alastair Byrne, a new recruit at the Army Training Centre in Pirbright writes about his first week of basic training in the British Army.
I arrived at the gate at 1000 hours, anxious and nervous – but slowly got used to my new surroundings.
The experience began with measurement for uniforms and continued with paperwork until 1200 hrs – all the official forms etc. We were issued our military kit and had our hair cut on Tuesday. It’s been hard to get used to, as my hair has never been this short! We were shown how to wear military kit and how to iron uniforms properly. We also had our initial medical checks – one of the injections was painful – and a brief about locker layout and inspections.
Our first physical training (PT) lesson involved a 1.5 mile run and carrying and lifting on Wednesday. I didn’t do too well in the run, but at least I know there is room for improvement.
On Thursday, we had a lot briefs/lessons and Combat Equipment Fighting Order (CEFO) packing lessons etc.
On Friday, we were shown live firing demonstrations and pyrotechnics – it made us all very eager to get on the ranges ourselves. Next was an exercise called ICE BREAKER, which involved demonstrations of ponchos and gave everyone a chance to say few words about themselves.
We did a little bit of catching up drills and personal administration at the weekend and got taught how to build our webbing. We also went to Church on Sunday which was very strange, as the vicar was playing an electric guitar and a banjo! It was also a good excuse for a cup of tea. I spent the rest of that night catching up with admin and getting ready for the locker inspection the next day.