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Reserve Forces & Cadets Association
Northern Ireland



05 June 2015

The MOD has announced plans to “grow” the Royal Irish Regiment (ROYAL IRISH) reserves in Northern Ireland by up to 100 additional posts with three centres playing a key role – Ballymena, Newtownabbey and Sunnyside Street in Belfast. 

A marketing and outreach campaign is being launched to attract up to a hundred more part-time troops across the three locations. And it’s being backed by a series of “open days” at the centres to give the public and potential recruits a chance to see the opportunities on offer. 

Army Reserves from 2 Royal Irish have recently been on exercise, training and operations not only in Europe but also in Africa. 

As well as newspaper advertising and a social media campaign, households in the areas will also get mail drop invites. The expansion follows recent plans announced to move a platoon (30 personnel) into Sunnyside Army Reserves Centre in Belfast as well as an additional platoon each into Ballymena and Newtownabbey. 

“We have immediate openings for 100 soldiers offering them training and fulfilling roles as infantrymen, chefs, signallers, drivers, mechanics, musicians and medics,” said Captain Rocky Mallon the Project Officer. 

With integrated training alongside its sister Battalion, 1 ROYAL IRISH there are exciting times ahead – not least the re-role from purely infantry to light mechanised infantry.  Indeed, 1 ROYAL IRISH is the first Battalion across the Army to get its new battle tested vehicles (FOXHOUND) and to train in this role. 

“We are looking for people from right across the community who are generally fit and keen to succeed. We will do the rest including training, mentoring and development,” he added. 

And with the new remuneration packages on offer a part time reserve career is offering more than just an exciting and dynamic role. 

“From the moment they join the Battalion you are paid for every day’s training as well as substantial bonus packages ranging from £300 after passing Army selection to £1000 on passing Phase One training and then another £1000 on passing Phase Two training. Add to this the annual tax free bounty of £428 in your first year rising to £1727 annually after five years and it makes a lot of sense.  You may even qualify to be paid to travel to work.

“But then there is also the transferable education and management development which is a major credit mark with employers. I haven’t even got round to mentioning the adventurous training and sport that is available on pay.”  2 R IRISH participate in many representative sports including Skiing, Football, Cross Country and Orienteering to name a few.

To find out more, visit one of the 2 R Irish Open Days:

Sunday 21st June, 1200-1700hrs:   Ballymena Army Reserve Centre, Lowfield Camp, BT43 7AZ
Sunday 28th June, 1200-1700hrs:   Abbots Croft Army Reserve Centre, Doagh Road, Newtownabbey, BT37 9QJ
Sunday 26th July, 1200-1700hrs:    Army Reserve Centre, Sunnyside Street, Belfast, BT7