What it’s like to be a woman in defence

14 November 2018

Introducing….Army Reservist Hannah Winton, Explosives Safety Manager at Head Office, to our focus on Women in Defence. Hannah joined Landmarc in 2012 after having previously serving as a Bomb Disposal Officer for the British Army.

I am the Explosive Safety Manager at Head Office which is part of the Quality Safety Health and Environment (QSHE) team.  I have carried out this role since I started working for Landmarc in the summer of 2012.  

At the time, I came into the business to support Landmarc and the Defence Infrastructure Organisation (DIO) to ensure the regulatory issues around people working in ammunition storage facilities were being met appropriately.  

“Since I have been here, the explosive side of the job hasn’t always taken up all of my time so I have done a variety of other tasks, including bid support on the NTEP contract, business development, training of new IT systems at the start of NTEP and more recently support to the development of the process maps for the business and our Sharepoint site Landscape.

I am also an Army Reservist and Landmarc support this part of my career without hesitation which is really important to me.

Transferring valuable skills

I started working with ammunition and explosives in the Army and I chose to specialise in this field so completed a 16 month course to become an Ammunition Technical Officer.

Whilst still serving, I was a Bomb Disposal Officer and served in Kosovo where I was responsible for all UK ammunition storage licenses and inspections.  At the time I had no idea how I would use these skills if I ever left the military, but Landmarc is about the third organisation I have worked for where I have used these skills in different ways.

Contrast in regulations

The biggest challenge of my day-to-day role has to be the contrast in the regulations for working with explosives between civilian companies, such as Landmarc, compared to the military and DIO staff.  Ensuring everyone understands the different regulations and making sure we can comply whilst still doing our job can be tricky at times.

Routinely I ensure that our Munitions Debris Capability on the four Air Weapons Ranges is fit for purpose and evolves as the requirement does.  I support any areas of the business that touch on ammunition and explosive storage, often guiding people to the regulations or the organisations within the military they need to liaise with. 

Most rewarding

The recognition for our support to DIO to ensure that the explosive storage facilities maintained their licenses, from both DIO and the MOD Explosive Inspectors was really important.

No limits for women in defence

These days there are no limits for women in defence - it’s an amazing space to work in. Defence allows you to apply your knowledge, especially the more technical subjects onto some unique and really exciting projects.  

Working at Landmarc we see some pretty amazing sights on the training areas – from new and exciting military equipment to a rare species of animal or plant and it comes with the added benefit of being out and about on the ranges again, something that is not easy to find in most civilian jobs. Of all the places I get to visit Cape Wrath is my favourite.

Landmarc is a really friendly company, the military/civilian mix makes for a great working environment. People just want to provide the best service they can to our customers and our staff are always so positive and passionate about their jobs. 

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