Para Officer

If your only reason for going to RMAS is Para Regt, you need a long hard think about what your plan B is if you don’t get one of the few places offered each year.

Absolutely this.

I've some friends who - despite being mad keen on the Paras and rightly rating their chances - didn't get selected. They never got over it and either left at the first opportunity or carried a chip on their shoulder for their subsequent service.

This pretty much did not happen with any other capbadge at Sandhurst.

If you genuinely wouldn't be happy elsewhere, that's fine - better to be honest with yourself and the system.

In which case, put in for the Royal Marines. Similarly plum roles & high deployablity, equally arduous, with the advantage that if you don't make the grade at Lympstone for whatever reason you can move on, and either get back to your current job or look at the reserves.
 

MoleBath

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Hi guys,

I am 26 and currently working offshore as an engineer. I have always wanted to join the paras but for other reasons have had to work close to home. I no longer have this restraint and are keen to apply to the Paras as an officer (with the intention to join the paras...).

Could anyone advise if its a lost cause at my age with no personal contacts in the reg? I have an engineering degree and 3+ years managing high value projects. I have read alot of the forums and it seems those who are selected are usually the following:
1. Under 25
2. Are known by the regiment

Any advice is greatly appreciated.
Have you looed at the Sappers , they have an airborne (small) element

 

Oyibo

LE
Absolutely this.

I've some friends who - despite being mad keen on the Paras and rightly rating their chances - didn't get selected. They never got over it and either left at the first opportunity or carried a chip on their shoulder for their subsequent service.

This pretty much did not happen with any other capbadge at Sandhurst.

If you genuinely wouldn't be happy elsewhere, that's fine - better to be honest with yourself and the system.

In which case, put in for the Royal Marines. Similarly plum roles & high deployablity, equally arduous, with the advantage that if you don't make the grade at Lympstone for whatever reason you can move on, and either get back to your current job or look at the reserves.

'Thirded' if I may (apart from the sea hat bit).

It's one hell of a risk to go to RMAS with the sole intention of joining the Parachute Regiment: Even if the selection board passes you then you still have P Coy (although in fairness not many Parachute Regiment officer candidates fail compared to other all-arms officers).

I would echo what @The_Duke and @Charlie_Cong say about having a good second choice - not a fall-back option, but something you really want to do be it infantry or not.

As for the 'maureens', there aren't, or weren't, enough slots after training to be a troop commander after commissioning, so you could end up in any old job or posted to an infantry regiment.
 
As for the 'maureens', there aren't, or weren't, enough slots after training to be a troop commander after commissioning, so you could end up in any old job or posted to an infantry regiment.

As an old neighbour's son found out the hard way when he got posted to the Cdo Log Regt. ISTR him not spinning hoofing dits about that when he came home on leave.
 
Because there is more to life than money?

Well said. I have many regrets in life and following the money early on in life rather than doing what I wanted to do is one of them.
 
Thanks for the replies. Marines officer has an upper age limit of 25, which makes me an old man for that as I am 26.

I think ultimately it is the infantry I am interested in, and the paras are the best. That being said, are there other 'up there' regiments that you cpuld recommend me looking into?

Many thanks
 
Thanks for the replies. Marines officer has an upper age limit of 25, which makes me an old man for that as I am 26.

I think ultimately it is the infantry I am interested in, and the paras are the best. That being said, are there other 'up there' regiments that you cpuld recommend me looking into?

Many thanks

From what I've have seen of Rifles officers, they seem to be a pretty switched on bunch. Lots of variety in a big capbadge too...
 
Thanks for the replies. Marines officer has an upper age limit of 25, which makes me an old man for that as I am 26.

I think ultimately it is the infantry I am interested in, and the paras are the best. That being said, are there other 'up there' regiments that you cpuld recommend me looking into?

Many thanks

I've met Infantry Officers from nearly all capbadges. I have to say from the population I've met, they're all pretty much on a par with each other for capability and capacity. Undoubtedly the Paras are quite fit, but that may only be the distinguishing feature. I'd also note that they were also all Lt Col and above, and I can't speak to the Junior Officer population.
 
If your degree in in a technical trade. Look at REME. Do P-Coy and go that route.
You don't need to join the Paras to serve with them
 

Jasenite

Old-Salt
To be fair they are.
Ever so sorry, but there is now way in this world that the Paras are going to deploy ever again in there perceived role. Despite the fact that there is no airlift capability at the current time, when was the last time airborne battalions were used? Op Market Garden? That went will didn't it? Para battalions should be disbanded, they have no current use.
 
Ever so sorry, but there is now way in this world that the Paras are going to deploy ever again in there perceived role. Despite the fact that there is no airlift capability at the current time, when was the last time airborne battalions were used? Op Market Garden? That went will didn't it? Para battalions should be disbanded, they have no current use.
French conventional airborne troops have made a number of operational descents in Mali since 2013. Check out the Operation Serval and the 2 REP threads. 16 AA have three main methods of insertion - Tactical Air Landing, Heliborne assault and Parachute Assault. While the Para drop is a last ditch option there is still a role for them as demonstrated in Kolwezi 1978, Rhodesian Fireforce - 76-79, Cassinga - Angols 1978, Iraqi 2003 - 173 Airborne RCT and US SF and a few more besides.

The day after we get rid of them is the day we find we need them. They are a tactical option. When 2 REP launched their rescue operation in Kolwezi in 1978, apparently the prime minister of the day, Jim Callaghan asked if the UK could carry out an operation like it. The answer "Er, no prime minister, in your defence cuts you disbanded 16 Parachute Brigade in 1977. Our only in role Para battalion - 1 Para is in the middle of an emergency tour of NI, 2 Para is on a 2 year tour of Berlin and 3 Para is on a 3 year tour in Osnabruck in BAOR.
 
Ever so sorry, but there is now way in this world that the Paras are going to deploy ever again in there perceived role. Despite the fact that there is no airlift capability at the current time, when was the last time airborne battalions were used? Op Market Garden? That went will didn't it? Para battalions should be disbanded, they have no current use.
Really ?

 
Ever so sorry, but there is now way in this world that the Paras are going to deploy ever again in there perceived role. Despite the fact that there is no airlift capability at the current time, when was the last time airborne battalions were used? Op Market Garden? That went will didn't it? Para battalions should be disbanded, they have no current use.

Suez
 

Glad_its_all_over

ADC
Book Reviewer
Echoing all the advice above, but adding a cynical old Senior NCO slant to it.

The major motivation, to my mind, for anyone wanting a commission in the Army ought to be that they aspire to command soldiers. I looked in vain for any mention of that in your OP. You should be sure that you'll enjoy and value the company of soldiers, who are sometimes not the easiest people in the world...

As to cap badge, wait out, frankly. Get through AOSB, sort yourself out some familiarisation visits, get a feel for what's out there in the wider Army and what the people you hope to lead look and feel like. Get to RMAS, give it your very best shot and enter the selection round better-informed and much more situationally aware. If you still want the Parachute Regiment at that point, then go for it.

As noted upthread, if you're an engineer - and either chartered or close to it - with major project experience, there are other options which you might consider. A lot depends on whether you see the Army as a lifetime career or an opportunity to take a few years out doing adventurous stuff. Both are perfectly respectable aspirations, of course, but, if the former, you might consider the Royal Engineers, who are not just barking mad to a man, but also do some pretty sporty things.
 

Bobby_Bert

Old-Salt
You are more than welcome to attend the online Army Officer Insight (Regular Entry) event on 27 October. This webinar will run from 1900-2000hrs and will include a Q & A session with serving young officers and RMAS staff. There will be a representative from the Parachute Regiment.

There are limited spaces available for this webinar, which will be allocated on a first-come first served basis via the registration link. For updates on the event keep an eye on this thread :

 
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