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Infantry (TA)

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The TA Infantry

You would think they would know better being safe on civi street but volunteer for a beasting in their spare time. Closet masochists perhaps?

TA Infantry Regiments

The Royal Regiment of Scotland

The Princess of Wales's Royal Regiment

The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment

The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers

The Royal Anglian Regiment

The Yorkshire Regiment

The Mercian Regiment

The Royal Welsh Regiment

The Royal Irish Regiment

The London Regiment

The Rifles

The Parachute Regiment

The Special Air Service Regiment

Not really Infantry - but included here for conveniences' sake:

Combat Infantryman's Course (Territorial Army) (CIC(TA))

Phase 2 training, also known as Trade training or Special To Arm (STA) training for the TA Infantry is the same regardless of which capbadge you are joining. CIC(TA) is the common Phase 2 course for all TA Infantry soldiers. It follows on from Phase 1 training and comprises a 2 week course at ITC Catterick taught by instructors from the Regular Army Infantry Regiments as part of Anzio Company The 2nd Infantry Training Battalion (2 ITB).

Input Standards

All students are to report to the Laidlaw Block, Vimy Barracks, between 0900 hours and 1100 hours on the arrival day where they will be received and processed by Anzio Company staff. Students are requested to arrive on time as the course programme commences immediately with the Start Standard Assessments which will start as soon as the individuals’ paperwork has been checked and found to be correct.

The syllabus that you will be taught whilst on the course is necessarily detailed and intense. As such, there is little time allocated to revision, refresher training or re-teaching missed lessons. It is therefore essential that you arrive fully conversant with the training you have received so far in order for you to safely progress with your career development. Soldiers under Training (SuT) must be able to run 1.5 miles in 13 mins or under at start of CIC (TA) and you will be tested on the first day of the course. All SuT who fail this test will be Returned to their Unit (RTU). If you are in any doubt, seek the advice of your unit staff who will be able to arrange refresher training either in unit or at your Regional Training Centre (RTC); you must be fully fit to undertake the course. In addition to the 1.5 mile run you will be required to pass Weapon Handling Tests on the SA80 on the first day of the course, failing these tests will also result in you being RTU.

Course Loading

CIC(TA) is loaded by the soldier's unit via TRHJ.

Training Programme

The CIC (TA) is designed to train you to be an infantryman and to take your place in a Rifle Section of a Rifle Platoon in your respective Battalion. It consists of Character Development, Basic First Aid, Map Reading, Fieldcraft and Skill at Arms. You will also be expected to pass your Annual Combat Marksmanship Test (ACMT). This training has been specially designed to ensure that the training is progressive, minimising injury, and to prepare you properly for the physical demands should you be joining a regular infantry battalion.

The outline of course content is as follows:

  • Day 1

Rifle WHT - Must be passed or you will be RTU.

Risk Reduction Run - Must come in under 13:00 or you will be RTU. Too many people failing so this has been binned.

Opening address, security and medical briefs.

Pack for Intro Ex

  • Day 2

Intro Ex

Bayonet fighting. Now taught on Bravo

Map reading.

Harbour routine

Recce Patrol walkthrough

  • Day 3

Pairs fire and maneuver

  • Day 4

Pairs fire and maneuver assessment

Conclusion of Intro exercise.

RMTs and 4 mile loaded march. Just a tab back to camp

Post-exercise administration.

  • Day 5

Rifle Zeroing at 30m


  • Day 6


  • Day 7

Live firing practice at 100m, 200m, 300m from different positions

  • Day 8

Deploy on Tac Ex

Recce patrol

  • Day 9

Round robin of section attacks

Ambush on previous recce site

  • Day 10

Platoon attack

Tab back to camp

Weapons Cleaning

Post Ex Admin

  • Day 11

Live firing

  • Day 12

Live firing

Depending on how the platoon is shooting, there's a chance to do an ACMT this day

  • Day 13

Scheduled ACMT

  • Day 14

AFT 8 mile loaded march

Officer Commanding's brief and Presentation parade.

Course dispersal.

On the final Saturday of the course, Week 2, there will be small presentation Parade on which a senior officer from ITC will present prizes to the ‘Best Recruit’ and ‘Best Endeavour’ winners from each platoon. Students will be free to depart from the course no later than approx 1230hrs on the final Saturday of Week 2.

Output Standards

On completion of CIC (TA) you will be classified as an Infantry Soldier Class 3 and may volunteer for operations and undertake further specialist training specific to your role in your Battalion.

CIC (TA) - Tips and Advice

Where can I find out the course dates?

Ask your recruiting staff or your SPSI, they will have access to them and will be able to provide you a copy. If possible phone to let them know in advance rather than knocking on their door on a Drill Night as they will have other things to be getting on with.

When will I get my Joining Instructions (JIs)?

Once your place on the course has been confirmed by HQ Recruiting Group on TRHJ (usually 6-8 weeks before the course start date) JIs can be downloaded from TRHJ and issued to you. You should take care to complete all the relevant Annexes to the JIs well in advance and pass them to your SPSI.

I've been booked on a course but can't attend, what do I do?

Places on the courses are limited and you should only cancel if you have good reason to do so however things do happen and the sooner you let your unit know the better. You should phone your recruiting staff or your SPSI and let them know as soon as possible so that they can remove you from the course. Ideally you should check the other dates the course is running and let them know when you definitely can attend so that they can try and rebook you as soon as possible.

What is it really like?

Having just completed CIC at Catterick (year end 2009) and following a number of requests from other users on Arrse, I thought it might be helpful to suggest some tips based on the instructors preferences on the course I attended.

For those readers who don't know me; prior to rejoining in 2001 and doing the course I had spent from 1988 to 2001 in the TA in various roles as an infanteer and have added in that experience into the mix. Everyone has their own ways and ideas that will and do differ; there is no one right way but plenty of wrong ones!

This is NOT intended as a definitive guide as each course will be different and every instructor will have their own preferences/ SOPs but, I hope it will give those people who have never done a CIC before/ had any/ little military experience an idea of what to expect and what to bring (the kit list on my course was w@nk and bore little resemblance to what we were actually expected to bring).

Please feel free to add to this/ amend as more recent courses go through :)

  • Kit

Bring everything that they tell you to bring on the list and nag your storeman for it if you don't get it. However, don't be too surprised/upset if you are told that Gore-Tex socks aren't issued at your unit. Suggested extras are as follows:

If you can bring a spare of everything then do so!

  • Trousers: You can scrape by with the issued 2 sets of trousers but only just. Beg borrow or steal a third or fourth.
  • Green issue T-shirts; as many as you can get your hands on - the body armour you will be wearing has never been washed; stinks and makes you sweat constantly (more on that later).
  • Combat jacket. Keep one for best.
  • Combat jacket lightweight (shirts). Hardly used them on my course but bring them for best/ summer courses.
  • Boots. Issue only unless you have a biff chit. They are hot on this!
  • Socks. Our instructors favoured issue socks. Bring plenty although my personal preference is for decent walking socks with a second inner liner sock.
  • Thermals. We were expected to bring issue but some units do not issue the stuff (mine included). Accordingly we were allowed to wear non issue kit as long as it was tactical coloured. Norwegians and fleeces are definitely counted as warm kit and, with the body armour, you will only be wearing this when you stop for a while. If you try and wear it when you are on the move you will regret it immediately!!!! You have been warned. If you have non-issue kit such as softie/ buffalo tops, the instructors were ok with us wearing them under our smocks when in harbour areas etc.
  • NOTE: The PRI shop at Vimmy (The Vickery block - I think) does a great range of 'green' kit at VERY cheap prices (Eg. Jet Boil at £55!) and will open up out of hours if you ask the bloke who runs it nicely and in advance (the guard room at Helles barracks MAY have his number or how to contact him)
  • Check with an NCO in your own unit first but, sewing some elastic 'X' shapes onto your webbing pouches and yoke allows easy attchment of cam in the field to break up the outline of the shoulders and webbing. I find that 1cm or wider black elastic works best. Put some tactical coloured tape on at the same time and you'll also find your kit a damn site faster when its chucked out the back of a 4 tonner or coach with 40 other loads of webbing too!
  • Personal Admin
  • Washing. In addition to your wash kit bring baby wipes, lots of. Great for getting off cam and sweat in the field and double as emergency arrse paper - with a disturbingly pleasant after-tingle!
  • Laundry bag: Despite what the DS staff might tell you; each block at Wathgill has a laundry room with a (one) washing machine and dryer (as well as a drying room). We had to use our ingenuity to a) find it and b) gain access (who dares...gets clean underwear and all that) but a large laundry bag will help keep all your stuff together and make sure that you aren't wearing the section grotbags skiddies. The machine is large enough to take two or three peoples worth of washing for a couple of days but does get heavily used so don't be a jack b@stard and only do your own stuff. Work together!
  • Shaving. Side burns to correct length! Bring metal razors (not electric for the field) and shaving oil (easier to pack). Don't worry about a mirror, the issue cam cream comes with one. Use that (you'll be reapplying new cam straight after a wash and shave in any case).
  • Barrier cream - as used in garages etc. A few days of cleaning weapons and your fingers will be split to f#ck and painful. Barrier cream and a decent hand cream will help keep your pinkies in a serviceable condition. Very gay I know, but hey, a happy/ comfortable soldier is a more effective soldier (that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!)
  • Anti-histamine tablets(non-drowsy ) Nearly evererybody on our course developed very bad prickly heat due to the body armour (and this was at Catterick in October) and these tablets helped reduce it. Take medical advice first though!!!!!!!
  • Compeed blister kit. A must!
  • Zinc oxide tape. Help prevent the blisters appearing in the first place :)
  • Ibuprofen. You are bound to have a few knocks etc and Brufen is the best anti-inflammatory painkiller you can get IMO. Again; take medical advice first.
  • Food. Haribo are a must for morale in the field and bribing the instructors (don't expect a bag to last long though!). Also comfort food that wont melt or crumble and is packed full of carbs and or protein. Fruit and nuts, Malt loaf, pepperami etc. Stack your smock pockets up with a days worth every morning. Nice!
  • Waterproof bags. Forget bin bags; seriously, forget them! Buy heavy-duty re-sealable plastic bags of various sizes and also invest in some canoe bags to fit the side pouches and main sack of the bergan. Every item in the field needs to be individually wrapped in a plastic bag i.e. like a Russian doll; a bag inside a bag. The instructors are hot on this and it is is good drills in any case. Do it! Tip: Lie or sit on each bag as you seal it to squeeze out the air. You will save shed loads of space in your bergan :)
  • Always carry a few quid on you. You may occasionaly find yourself with an hour to kill at Helles baracks and money is alway handy at the NAAFI, Cyber cafe and PRI shop etc. (1 hours internet access will cost you a quid). There is also an arcade where you can use your new found military skills to criticise the Time Crysis guys weapon handling drills.
  • Admin in the field

Make sure that you get used to working in total darkness without a torch. This includes getting dressed and packed away. The forestry block you will be deployed to is pitch black except near the edges and the only way you can find things is by touch. Walk slowly and watch your eyes!

You WILL pack everything away (including sleeping bags and roll mat - but NOT basha) every time you go on stag. So get well versed at doing it quickly and as silently as possible. Practice in a blacked out room if need be! You'll feel a cnut; your mum'll look at you funny and your girlfriend (or boyfriend if you are that way inclined) might ditch you but, it will be time well spent; trust me! Better that than turning your section area into a Vegas disco at 03:00 hrs and incurring the wrath of the instructors and everyone else on the course when you then get bumped 20 mins later for being a overly illuminated CNUT! Which brings me onto....

Lights: Red filters can be swapped for a taped out filter that only allows a pinhole of white light but which can be quickly removed for a full beam on the rare occasions you need it. I also purchased some matchstick size cyalumes which I placed, partially buried, by the track plan side of my basha to allow me/ and the guy who was relieving me on stag rapid identification of my basha spot at night, without sacrificing light security. You can buy these from fishing tackle stores.

TIP: Paint a small spot of luminous paint on the INSIDE of your helmet. This not only allows rapid identification of it at night when being bumped or going on stag BUT, also when trying to sort it from the hundreds of other helmets attached to webbing when it is pulled out of the storage bay of the coaches.

  • Rifle Cleaning

Suspend everything you have ever read, heard or were told about illegal cleaning at your unit for the duration of this course.....

Scotchbrite is IN, as is illegal stripping and using such items as the firing pin to get into those little nooks and crannies. Cleaning the monkeys arrse (aka the chamber). Try cotton buds or, more effectively, get a double sized piece of flannelette, chew it till soggy, squeeze out the residue and insert into said arrse. Rotate inside the arrse using firing pin or the long handled, fine/ very thin, flat head screwdriver that you have brought with you ;)

I would also suggest bringing a small, refillable, pump action spray bottle (you can get them in Boots/ Superdrug etc) for spraying gun oil onto working parts and into those hard to reach places of the TMH. Other stuff you might want to consider bringing (at your own risk) is a small tin of WD40 (our instructors used it to help de-carbon the weapons) and a trip to the cycle shop for chain de-greaser (for inside the TMH) might be well spent if you can get away with it....Me? I asked the kitchen staff very politely for some industrial kitchen de-greaser spray which brought my TMH up beautifully. Sorted!

There is already a shed load of fitness stuff on here including a well written (ahem) article on CFTs. Be prepared. You will need to be fit, you will be running crawling around a fair bit (especially on bayonet practice). You will be doing all this on a hilly-ish terrain. Make sure you are able to carry weight over distance at speed. Ask your unit PTI for help or search on here in the fitness forum.

  • Course Information

I have been asked to put down what we did here but, I don't think that is going to help as everybody I have talked to has done a different routine however; what I will say is that you will be eased into things relatively gently with a one day field-ex in the first week as well as range work. The second week is more intense but still no great shakes for most SUTs and included a four day field-ex and more range work. There was no CBRN/ NBC on my course and two CFTs (one of 4 miles and one of 6; weeks one and two respectively). PFT the day you arrive and its not a flat course. my PB dropped by 20 seconds due to this, so if you are near the borderline for timings (and you really shouldn't be) you will need to work on your phys even more. Throwing up by the side of the end point is embarrassing for you AND your mates and there is really NO excuse.

Final advice: Remember the instructors know FAR more than you do and what they say is golden. Keep your ears open, your gob shut and try your best. If you get a b0ll0cking; take it and wind your neck in; you probably deserved it even if you didn't think so. A sense of humour is a must but keep it in the right place. You may have been in before, but if you are going through CIC again remember that as far as the instructors are concerned you are just another SUT. Shut your gob and don't be a know all. HELP YOUR MATES, WORK AS A TEAM, AND REMEMBER.... YOU ARE NOT IN A WINNER TAKES ALL COMPETITION, YOU WILL GET MORE BROWNIE POINTS FOR HONESTY, INTEGRITY AND HELPING YOUR MATES THAN YOU WILL FOR BEING THE FIRST IN THE SECTION TO RECITE WHAT PAWPERSO STANDS FOR.

Good luck and Enjoy ;)

What is it really like? #2 (with thanks to theheartbreakkid)

I would offer some bits of advice on kit, as the packing list, as usual, bears little resemblance to what they tell you to bring. There will be opportunities for stocking up, however, this will waste your valuable admin and/or down time, so try and get it before you go:

If you have decent boots (Lowas/Altbergs etc) take them with you as well as your 2 pairs of issue boots. I managed to sneak my Lowas on after a few days which they don’t seem to mind, as long as you are pulling your weight within the section/platoon. Don’t wear them for the bayonet training though as they will end up knackered, and if they are gore-tex will probably take the entire course to dry out! Also, if you have Magnums or any other type of boot, they did pick up on those…

Buy an ortileb bag or similar for the main section of your Bergan.

Plenty of large sealable bags for individually waterproofing clothing on exercise.

3/4 padlocks.

Flip flops.

Extra t shirts, socks and pants (3 of each at least).

An extra pair of combat trousers.


Zinc oxide tape.

Barrier cream.


Cam cream.

A green Softie (the fleece takes up way too much room in the Bergan, and isn’t as good as a Softie).

Knee pads (everyone’s knees were knackered; you will understand why when you’re there!) These will be a great investment.

A thin pair of gloves (Catterick is cold but you can’t operate your weapon well enough with the issue ones).

Extra bungees and tent pegs (dark in colour as it is all tactical).

A head torch/small torch (doesn’t have to be red light) although you can’t use these very often, they are handy when you can.

Cylaumes to put next to your basha so you can find it (slightly buried though, otherwise you’ll have people coming up to you all night thinking you are the NCOs).

Plenty of strong ibuprofen and anti-histamines.

Wet wipes (small packets).

And some advice on attitude/admin:

Keep your mouth shut, even if you don’t agree with what the NCOs are saying.

Do what you’re told when you’re told and asap.

In all the phys try and be near the front whenever you can, it is noticed.

DO volunteer.

Double waterproof everything.

Always be seen to be helping out with the block jobs etc as the ones that failed were jack cnuts and did nothing other than admin themselves.

Always help others if their kit isn’t in order or they are struggling etc.

ALWAYS salute officers and brace up for WOs; it is a regular garrison not your TA centre. Standby if you don’t.

Hit the fitness hard and get yourself used to sleeping very little. It is gruelling as it is a different type of fitness than going to the gym after work, so you need to make sure you’re ready fitness-wise. You will lose a significant amount of weight on the course so get loads of healthy food down you before you go so you don’t come back looking like an extra from “Bridge on the River Kwai” .


The only trade available in the Infantry is Infantry Soldier (unless you are serving with the SAS) however once you have passed CIC(TA) and qualified as an Infantry Soldier Class 3 you may remain as a rifleman or undertake additional training to specialize in:

  • Signals
  • MT

The qualifications you require in your specialisation as you progress through the ranks are in the promotion section below.


Promotion in the TA Infantry is governed by the Directive for Infantry Employments (DIE) which is issued annually. If you are unsure of the current requirements for promotion speak to your PSI or PSAO.

Pte to LCpl

The following courses are promotion qualifying for the rank of LCpl in the TA Infantry:

LCpl to Cpl

The following courses are promotion qualifying for the rank of Cpl in tha TA Infantry:

  • GPMG Gunner: Machine Gun Section Commander TA.
  • Signaller: Regimental Signals Detachment Commander TA.
  • Storeman: All Arms Stores Accountant.
  • MT: Defence MT Junior Management and Accounting or Defence B Vehicle Inspection and Maintenance Operator.

Cpl to Sgt

The following courses are promotion qualifying for the rank of Sgt in tha TA Infantry:

  • Rifleman: Platoon Sergeant's Battle Course (PSBC) Tactics TA.
  • GPMG Gunner: Platoon Sergeant's Battle Course (PSBC) Tactics TA.
  • Signaller: Regimental Signals Command Vehicle Sergeant TA.
  • Storeman: All Arms Stores Accountant.
  • MT: Defence Transport Operator.

Sgt to CSgt

The following courses are promotion qualifying for the rank of CSgt in the TA Infantry:

  • Rifleman: No course requirement.
  • GPMG Gunner: Machine Gun Platoon Commander TA (not mandatory).
  • Signaller: No course requirement.
  • Storeman: No course requirement.
  • MT: No course requirement.

CSgt to WO2

The following courses are promotion qualifying for the rank of WO2 in the TA Infantry:

  • Rifleman: No course requirement.
  • GPMG Gunner: No course requirement.
  • Signaller: No course requirement.
  • Storeman: No course requirement.
  • MT: No course requirement.

WO2 to WO1 (RSM)

The following courses are promotion qualifying for the rank of WO1 (RSM) in the TA Infantry:

  • Rifleman: No course requirement.
  • GPMG Gunner: No course requirement.
  • Signaller: No course requirement.
  • Storeman: No course requirement.
  • MT: No course requirement.