IT is one of the biggest challenges facing the British Army – and it is looking to Southampton for help.

As many people start the new year with resolutions to transform their careers and bring adventure into their lives, Army chiefs are aiming to capitalise on that craving for excitement and new challenges.

They have launched a major multi-million pound recruitment drive and Southampton is one of its targets.

As part of the new drive to boost regular and reserve forces, the Army is looking to sign up 200 new recruits from Southampton to the Army Reserve – formerly the Territorial Army.

The More Than Meets The Eye campaign aims to highlight the wide range of roles available in the military, especially after a survey revealed that many people were unaware of the diversity of jobs on offer.

They are keen to stress that the Army is not just about fighting and that just as important are the chefs, mechanics and builders who are all vital for any campaign.

The research, carried out by OnePoll on behalf of the Army, also found that nearly one in three people in the south east are unhappy with their current career.

So the Army hopes that by making people aware of the diversity of the hundreds of roles and thousands of jobs on offer, signing up will appeal to those dissatisfied in their jobs, craving a new adventure and career satisfaction.

Despite many long-held misconceptions, those soldiers in the Reserve, who train in their spare time, are paid the same hourly rates as regulars and if they have a civilian job, there are incentives and compensation for their employers when they are called out to duty.

Major-General Chris Tickell, director-general of Army recruiting and training, said: “The Army is always looking for people with an adventurous and can-do attitude.

“Joining opens up a number of doors for new recruits, giving them access to excellent training and developing attributes such as communication, motivation, fitness and leadership.

“The Army is restructuring to ensure regu lar and reserve soldiers are fully integrated into one force, training and working alongside each other.

“We want to show potential recruits that there is much more to the Army than meets the eye.

“A part-time role can offer people something entirely different to their nine-to-five job or complement what they already do by giving them additional or new qualifications and skills which will help develop their own careers.”

The new drive comes as the Army is being cut from 100,000 to about 82,000, but it wants to increase the Army Reserve from 19,000 to 30,000, and has failed to meet its targets so far.

As the British Army reorganises itself, the Reserves Forces will integrate fully with their regular counterparts and are being reinvigorated with an additional £1.8bn being spent over the next ten years to improve its training and equipment.

A new simplified online application form, offering a more streamlined medical clearance process and an Army fitness app, will also be launched this month in a bid to entice more potential recruits to sign up.

Although running a recruitment campaign alongside a redundancy scheme might seem illogical, the Ministry of Defence explains that it must always maintain a constant flow of junior recruits to train for the future.

  • For more information about exciting Army Reservist job opportunities, log on to or ring 0845 600 8080.