Gallery: Soldiers from Colchester & Wattisham hone their skills ahead of US training exercise

Soldiers from 16 Air Assault Brigade have practiced the skills needed to seize an airfield in Exerc

Soldiers from 16 Air Assault Brigade have practiced the skills needed to seize an airfield in Exercise Red Prepare as they prepare for a major training exercise in America. - Credit: Corporal Andy Reddy RLC

Colchester-based troops have completed a practice mission with Wattisham-based Apache attack helicopters ahead of a major training exercise.

Soldiers from 16 Air Assault Brigade have practiced the skills needed to seize an airfield in Exerc

Soldiers from 16 Air Assault Brigade have practiced the skills needed to seize an airfield in Exercise Red Prepare as they prepare for a major training exercise in America. - Credit: Corporal Andy Reddy RLC

Paratroopers from 3rd Battalion The Parachute Regiment in 16 Air Assault Brigade with air support from 3 Regiment Army Air Corps seized an airfield on the Stanford Training Area in Norfolk, before soldiers from 23 Engineer Regiment (Air Assault) followed up to clear obstacles, remove unexploded ordinance and fill craters to bring the runway back into use.

Exercise Red Prepare was carried out before the battlegroup head to Fort Bragg for a six-week joint training exercise with the USA’s own rapid reaction force.

Senior officers from the American 2nd Brigade Combat Team watched the training.

Brigadier Nick Borton, Commander of 16 Air Asslt Bde, said: “We both serve as high readiness reaction forces and it makes sense to train with a key ally so we are able to operate together.”


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Private Anthony Scott, 25, from Maldon, in 3 PARA, said: “This was a good chance to run out our skills and drills and work with Apache helicopters.

“We tabbed onto the area last night, attacked and captured buildings to harbour in, did a recce of the airfield and then did the attack, which went very well.

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“I’m looking forward to the American exercise. It will be a good opportunity to train alongside our American colleagues and learn more about how they do business.”

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