Local soldier 2nd Lieutenant Theo Gill returned to his former school this week to tell students in the Lower Sixth Form about life in the Army and his experiences in Afghanistan, where he recently completed a seven-month tour of duty.
old Theo is with the 2nd Battalion the Yorkshire Regiment, the Green Howards,
and spoke to boys and girls at Queen Elizabeth's Grammar School, Blackburn,
about the training and selection procedures he had gone through before passing
out at Sandhurst and his present regimental commission.
In Afghanistan, he was part of the Operational Mentoring Liaison Team, meaning he was leading not only 10 British soldiers but also 120 Afghan soldiers on patrol, guarding against attacks by the Taliban.
"Gaining the trust and respect of troops whose culture is completely different from ours was a real challenge," he said, but one which he thoroughly enjoyed and for which his military training stood him in good stead.
After answering questions put to him by students, 2nd Lt Gill encouraged anyone, male or female, who was considering a military career to find out more about it from local careers information sources and the internet, and for those at university to look to take advantage of the Officer Training Corps that operate at most major universities.