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Joining the Army - A Few Questions


Hi everyone.

Joining the Army has been something I have considered since I was a child. Now I'm working towards my necessary qualifications to join as an officer, but I do have a few questions. I know I am probably better off asking the Army about this, but any opinions and answers on here would be greatly appreciated.

1. My brother joined the Army a few years back. Unfortunately, he didn't have the best of experiences, no doubt mostly due to his own laziness and lack of discipline. He did something he shouldn't have and has a civilian weapons charge against him, for which he was found guilty at court and paid a fine (not to mention several arrests for domestic incidences with his ex), as well as going AWOL. He has ended his relationship with his Regiment on terrible terms and I have no doubt that he will be looked up when I submit my application to the Army. I don't have the best of relationships with him and I certainly am nothing like him, but will his history in the Army and his criminal record affect my chances of getting into the Army? I have wanted this since I was a kid and my family never approved, but for him it was a quick way of getting out of home and pissing me off at the same time (yes, he is actually that pathetic).

2. I was moved to Spain as a young child. I can remember having some vaccines in the UK, but I was too young to remember what they were. I can't remember having any vaccines since I've been in Spain and I was not included when doctors came to my classroom at school to administer vaccines to the kids. I've asked my mother about it because I understand it's something the Army will ask my doctor for - but her response is "oh, I don't know - why is it even important?" and my doctor will have no knowledge of any vaccines because I've not had any in the 13 years I've lived in this country.

3. Sponsor address: As I said before, my family is less than supportive of my decision. They have a terrible view of the Army as it is because of my brother's experience, but they fail to recognise that 95% of that is his own fault and the other 5% of the corruption in the Regiment he joined (and I know things are less than stellar in that Regiment because I used to date an NCO in that Regiment for two years). None of my family in the UK will let me use them as a sponsor because they don't want me to join and I can't ask any of my friends. Is there any way for me to get around this necessary part of my application?

4. Bank account: I understand I'll need a UK bank account if my application is successful, but in order to open a bank account in the UK, I'm going to need a UK address and proof that's my address, which I obviously don't have. My brother's history with setting his bank account isn't relevant here because his former Regiment took care of that and it was under different circumstances.

I appreciate any advice and answers you can provide me with regarding these questions. Thank you in advance for any answers.

P.S. Sorry for the lengthy post!


Have you spoken to the NRC? Our commonwealth friends seem to manage just fine, so coming from Spain shouldn't be an issue.

Hi, Randy.

I haven't spoken to anyone yet, I just didn't know is these things could end up being a problem. I'll contact the Army closer to when I am planning on submitting my application.

Thank you for your answer.


I think the best thing to do would be to open an application or at least get in contact with a Careers Office/NRC. They will have come across similar circumstances before and should be able to point you in the right direction.

1) I know that you are asked to give details of family that have served in the last 15 years, but I would think that this is to give the Board an idea of how informed you will be about Army life rather than a quasi-background check. But @cpunk may be able to shed more light on this.

2) You may be able to contact your original British GP to find out the vaccinations you had before going to Spain. I had a medical not too long ago, and apparently a couple of my vaccines were out of date and as long as I committed to having them topped-up before starting training it wasn't a problem. However, you may have to pay to have them done privately if you haven't got a GP or you're not in NHS age-range.

3 & 4) Not sure how to get around this one if you need a sponsor address and bank account but you won't need the bank details until you get through the whole recruitment process, so you'll have some time to get that one sorted.
Have you spoken to the NRC? Our commonwealth friends seem to manage just fine, so coming from Spain shouldn't be an issue.
Is that because 'commonwealth friends' are from the commonwealth, and so is Spain, er...
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Thank you for the reply - I really appreciate any feedback.

I'm hoping my brother's military history will not make them question my ability. Him and I have always been complete opposites - I'm hard working, determined and I don't sign up to something just to quit when I don't like it.

I moved here when I was 8, so I wouldn't even know how to find my old GP and there's no way my mother would remember. I think I'd be best going to see my Spanish doctor and explaining the situation. The NHS wouldn't cover anything because I've been in Spain most of my life and I'm registered into the Spanish Social Security system.

Thank you so much for all of your advice. Anything to prepare me a little bit more is always appreciated. :)


The best thing to do is to contact the NRC via the army recruiting website. I doubt that your brother's experience will be a big issue but your Spanish residency may have some impact.
Oh dear..
You are female, 22, and come onto ARRSE to sort an address in the UK?
I fear that you may end up with an offer or two you might not have considered...

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