A company of troops from the Queens Own Yeomanry deployed to Croatia’s Knin Training Area to take part in Exercise Sava Star, say the British Army.

The three-country alliance, all members of NATO, worked on skills such as patrolling during day and night, setting up harbour areas and battlefield casualty drills, with the training package culminating in a final dawn attack on ‘enemy’ forces, according to a news release.

Commanding Officer (CO) Lt Col Pennett was delighted with the way the Eastern European adventure progressed:

“This provides endless opportunities to challenge troops; to work together with Croatian forces in such a different environment is a real gem. It isn’t just about the exercising troops in the wood line; getting us here, driving through six different countries, medical support – we have to consider the regiment as a whole.

The key characteristic of being a Yeoman is the willingness to fight and Light Cavalry is all about mindset, mobility and communications. Naturally reservists can’t give 100% of their time but when they do, I expect 100%.”

While the deployment to the Balkans represents a significant date in the QOY calendar, it is far from the only exciting activity the unit will be undertaking over what remains of the year.

“I hope to take a team out to South Africa for a patrols competition and work with my own Troop on getting qualified on the Jackal platform,” said 2Lt Palmer Price.

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I wonder how well army reserve recruitment/retention is going as we don’t hear much about it in the press anymore. An Infantry Battalion/Cavalry Regiment massing a company or squadron strength for their “summer camp” sounds about right and suggests these reservist units are still terribly undermanned. In my day in 2WESSEX, the battalion could just about pull together 1.5 full strength rifle/hq companies or just one full platoon from each of the rifle companies and 2 platoons from hq company. It’s why the TA Infantry was really just seen as a pool of extra troops who could supplement regular units… Read more »

Andy McNab

We’ve all done stuff mate..


But perhaps not with the reserves based on the popularity of the thread


Mate when I was an SPSI, even with a well recruited and motivated reserve Airborne Battalion, we struggled to get 30-40 men from the Battalion to deploy on ops, as well you know a 6 month deployment takes 12 months of their time. Reserve units deploying en mass as a formed unit will never happen. The concept was formed to justify massive cuts in regular units. While we do have skilled, experienced and very keen reserves, they cannot give the time to keep their skill set sharp and ready to deploy. And if we are honest, our of all the… Read more »


I agree with you. The standard UK reserve commitment is too little to be an effective fighting force (against peer forces that is) but nevertheless still quite a commitment, certainly when combined with a ‘career’. What I noticed was that a lot of the best reserve troops didn’t really have career jobs, but earned across 2 or even 3 more casual jobs and topped that up with their army money and bounty. For those troops with time, there was always a lot more they could volunteer for – courses, playing hostages, fitness/extra training so it was not a bad little… Read more »


Very true, I used to get the young unemployed lads in during the day maybe 3 or 4 days a week, to give me a hand, and give them a bit extra cash. Although justifying it with the PASO and RHQ could be hard.

David Barry

@Airborne you missed out Police in your list 😉 KORBR struggled to put together a platoon at Barrow although London Irish did very well sometimes. 253 Provost again could field a pl+HQ element. However, those wete the days of no fuel for landies and no blank. It was vad enough lugging a gimpy with no ammo but when the officers insisted on taking a CharlieG and wearing a noddy suit with personal weapon in July well, morale was just a tad impacted in LIR, 253 just set up TPs around the TACs when presented with no fuel. Who had the… Read more »