The UK Military consists of three service branches and each has its own UK Military Training function:

Each service branch is made up of

  • Commissioned Officers
  • Other ranks such as soldiers in the army, navy ratings or marines and RAF airmen

The tri-service concept allows both a standardisation of procedures and efficiency savings.

The Ministry of Defence (MOD) calculates the number of servicemen that need to be enlisted to maintain each service at the required manning level. Service men and women leave at the end and during engagements.

In 2020, the UK military has a full-time requirement of 142,500 personnel

  • Army: 82,000
  • Royal Navy: 29,00
  • RAF: 31,500

Recruitment and Selection Process

Individuals tend to be attracted to a particular service rather than the military overall, and each service conducts separate recruitment and marketing campaigns although the selection processes are similar.

There are different selection procedures for Officers compared to the Other Ranks, however all include interviews, aptitude testing and personality checks. There are also health checks and fitness tests

The UK Military use several marketing methods to attract new recruits. These include:

  • High street stalls
  • Trade shows
  • School and university visits
  • Social media
  • The digital and printed press
  • Television
  • Billboards

Armed Forces Eligibility

The general eligibility principles are:

  • Age: 16 – 37 years old
  • Fitness: 2.4 km run with a specific time limit appropriate to age and gender
  • Medical exam for height, weight, eyesight, and ongoing illnesses
  • Nationality and Residency from Britain, Ireland, or the Commonwealth
  • Some Criminal convictions can bar recruits from joining
  • Nature and placement of tattoos

Funding and Scholarships

There are several UK military service funding and scholarship options available. These include:

  • A level scholarship
  • Welbeck Defence Sixth Form College
  • Defence Technical Undergraduate Scheme
  • Military Aviation Academy
  • In-service degree for non-engineer officers
  • Bursaries
  • Medical and Dental cadetships

Armed Forces Careers Office (AFCO)

Recruits start their application to each of the three-armed forces in the UK by visiting an Armed Forces Careers Office which are located all over the country.

These are links to the AFCO website for each of the armed forces in the UK:

  • Royal Navy
  • Army
  • Royal Air Force

UK Military Training

The UK Military has a long-established tradition of offering training and education. Training is progressive and continues through your career and is a mixture of mandatory, optional, individual, and collective training.

Individual training is covered by the education and training given to an individual which results in a military or civilian qualification.

Collective training can be for a unit, service, tri-service, or NATO exercise

The Three Phases of UK Military Training

  • Phase 0: Specialist training prior to entry into the service
  • Phase 1: Initial training which converts civilian recruits into party trained military personnel following a common military syllabus to ensure consistency. This phase is commonly known as “Boot Camp”. The basic training can take from 10 to 44 weeks depending on the service branch and role, and is an intense period of indoctrination and instruction in military skills, rules and customs, including uniform wearing, physical fitness and some combat procedures. Emphasis is placed on obeying rules and executing orders
  • Phase 2: Specialist training provides military personal with the skills, knowledge, and qualifications to do their job. The length of this training can range from a few weeks to several months or years depending on the job and role
  • Phase 3: Career training which is a mixture promotion and specialist trade and non-trade training. UK military personnel can spend as much as one third of their career attending training courses

UK Military Training Essential Kit

Supply Drop can provide new recruits to the Army, Navy and RAF with all the essential items to start their initial, basic training at heavily discounted prices and making a donation to a services charity when you purchase a full package.