IF you’ve ever wondered what goes on behind the gates at your local TA Centre at Artillery Road in Coleraine, then you could get some answers this Saturday (February 18) - it’s a visit which could set you on track for a whole new part time career.
On that day, from 11.00am to 4.00pm, local Territorial Army soldiers will take part in a Recruiting Information Day that’s been specially designed to help potential newcomers to learn about life in the TA ‘from the horse’s mouth’.
Regimental Operational Support Warrant Officer Robert Brannigan says, “There is a strong volunteer ethos on the North Coast and it has always been an important recruiting area for us. That’s why we are particularly targeting the locality as we announce new job opportunities for 2012 and beyond.
“We feel there is nothing quite as useful as bringing people in for an informal, yet informed, look around and a chat with serving soldiers and officers. This is our chance to show off our skills, highlight opportunities and explain what we do both while training here in Northern Ireland and, importantly, while on deployment overseas. People can check us out with no obligation to take the interest any further … and of course we can do the same with them!
“Right now there are job opportunities for infantry soldiers, engineers, gunners, drivers, nurses … and a host of other roles too. While you may need particular qualifications for specific roles, other posts require more general attributes and, if someone comes to us with the right attitude, sense of commitment and a willingness to learn, then hard work and TA training will combine to do the rest.
”Our Recruiting Information Day will showcase the full range of opportunities based in the immediate area as well as slightly further afield as many people are prepared to travel to find the right match for their career interests and skills sets - we don’t necessarily assume that people will automatically opt to serve in the TA unit which is nearest to their home.”
The TA is looking for highly motivated men and women aged between 17 and 43 (older applicants with specific skills can still apply) who are fully committed to building a part time career in the TA or who, perhaps, want to sample TA life as a taster for a full time military career at some future date.
These days it’s a serious commitment for as Robert, explains this is very far from an opportunity to ‘play soldiers’.
Added Robert Brannigan: “Today the Territorial Army makes up around one quarter of the country’s defence forces. That means that the Territorial who trains in your local TA Centre will be the same man or woman who, within a relatively short period of time, could well be on active service in Afghanistan. Many local men and women have already deployed on overseas tours of duty and we’re hoping to recruit others of the same high calibre and commitment”
For further information about the Recruiting Information Day, or Territorial Army careers call (02892) 260415 or visit army.mod.uk