Today we celebrate Reserves Day, which recognises the valuable contribution of reservists to our Armed Forces. Team Manager, Davina Clipston, shares her experience of being an army reservist at the Soldier Academy in Pirbright.

“My role within the reserves is Company Sergeant Major (WO2) of Kohima Company at the Soldier Academy at Pirbright in Surrey, where I’m a driver by trade after serving in the Royal Logistic Corps (RLC) for 22 and a half years. As a regular in the RLC, I completed several deployments in Northern Ireland, Iraq, and Afghanistan. Now, I also represent the Army Veterans and RLC in hockey – which I thoroughly enjoy.


“I’ve been a reservist for six years, where I work every other weekend facilitating the exercise team to deliver basic reserve training. This training is called Foundation, which is held over five weekends or consolidated over two weeks. This sees new recruits learn how to use an SA80 weapon and conduct a weapon handling test before firing the Annual Combat Marksmanship Test (ACMT). Foot drills are essential for the basis of military discipline, functional training and bayonet fighting, as well as completing the Role Fitness Test, entry level (RFT (E). This is known for being age and gender free and the tests/weight carried, depends on the specific role for ground or non-ground close combat recruits. Values and standards are tested throughout both courses, these are the fundamentals of every soldier.

“The second part of basic training is the two-week battle camp, which is continuous; this brings together all the basics learned in the Foundation stage and puts it to the test!


“The benefits of being a reservist are endless. I have a range of qualifications and being an ex-regular and an instructor, I have continued to maintain core values and install them into my training team.

“I have a great work-life balance managing my two careers, where I work as a Team Manager throughout the week at Longmoor Camp, making it easier to train at the weekends.

“Landmarc is very supportive, as are my colleagues, who understand my reservist responsibilities. As my role at Landmarc is to support the training of our Armed Forces, I fully understand their military training requirements, our customer and their needs, which helps us to deliver a better service.

“The most fulfilling experience of being a reservist is taking part in the pass-off parade at the end of battle camp and watching the recruits become reserve soldiers. This is a very proud moment.

“For anyone thinking about joining, my advice is that it’s extremely rewarding; you can play sports and go on adventure training, travel the world, and meet new people.”