Where do you start in the TA?

Hi all,

I'm looking at options in the TA and not entirely sure of the choices available to me, assuming I have any?? :) I'm 32 years old with degrees in Computing and Classics. I run several western martial arts clubs so fitness shouldn't be an issue. I have a few questions about starting in the TA. Apologies if they have been asked before:

As a general rule do all TA recruits start in the ranks?
What is the situation with regards to officers? Are they taken from the regulars or is it possible to join the TA as an officer and if so how does this work?
Assuming it is possible to join as an officer, what are the requirements?

Any links or info would be veyr much appreciated.
You start by posting in the 'Joining the TA Forum'...

1) Not necessarily, but those who have have found their time in the ranks to be useful

2) You can join the TA as an Officer. Some have previous regular service, but many do not.

3) http://www2.army.mod.uk/ldrtc/officer_training_wing/index.htm

Best thing to do is go down to your local unit and ask them.


Linky to Army Jobs website detailing the requirements to join as a TA officer:


Looking at it you meet the educational requirements but might need to get a shifty on as the upper age limit is 33 (with some exceptions).

It is possible to join the TA as an officer without serving in the regulars first - whilst I was undergoing my phase 1 training at the RTC we were all asked if any of us wanted to be considered for officer training.

Sure others will fill in any gaps in the above

Good luck

Thanks for that. Cripes, time is catching up when being 32 is getting too old! :) That page is very useful, I will continue digging around for useful information. I have lots of other questions but I will have a good punt around this forum first of all!

kind regards
Don't want to pish on your fire but please get away from the idea that as you have a degree, that means you should go commission, we have loads of guys in my lot with degrees in the ranks (university town) but that doesn't mean they have the drive, ability and (most importantly) the time available to become an officer.

My advice is express an interest in commission and then prove to the unit it your good enough by excelling in training.
Polemarch said:
I run several western martial arts clubs .....
Sorry, but I can't get the image of Jackie Chan in Shanghai Noon/Knights out of my mind.

Look at the available trades/jobs and decide which you'd like to go for. Then look at local units and see if the trade/job you want is available locally. Then look at nationally-recruited units to see if you'd be better suited to what they have to offer.

Then consider the commissioned aspect. Officers are management, so are less likely to be actually doing the trades/jobs that you're interested in. There's an argument that it's better to start at ground level so that you know what you're managing when you get commissioned, but it's not essential.

Then start making phone calls, arranging to visit your selected unit to confirm that you've made the right choice.