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Harrogate is most commonly known within military circles as the location of the Army Foundation College, shortened sometimes to AFC(H). The AFC is a Phase 1 Training establishment for the British Army, having two Junior Entry intakes per year, of approx. 1000 recruits in a year, between the ages of 16 and 17. All cap badges are trained here, minus those wishing to join AGC RMP.

Originally, a technical college for the Royal Signals, it was refurbished and re-opened in 2001 and became the Army Foundation College, just as the Army Technical Foundation College in Arborfield closed it doors.

The course run at the AFC covers the Common Military Syllabus taught at other Army Training Regiments, as well as the Duke of Edinburgh Award scheme, an additional 5 weeks of Adventure Training, Leadership and Initiative training, approx. 15 exercises and a battlecamp, as well as a 4 day trip to the WW2 landing beaches in Normandy. The course totals 42 weeks, with 10 weeks leave.

Also the setting for a substantial part of the future Nobel Prize For Literature nominee Picking Up The Brass.