Promotion for Gavin after passing course with flying colours

Lance Corporal Gavin Young, from Cupar. (Photo: Major Wendy Faux)
Lance Corporal Gavin Young, from Cupar. (Photo: Major Wendy Faux)

A young soldier from Cupar has been promoted after passing a tough seven-week training course in infantry skills.

Highlander Gavin Young (19) was one of only 36 who completed the course out of the 54 who started it.

He did so well that he began the final parade as a private and marched off as a lance corporal.

“At the start it was a learning phase but the last few weeks have been the testing phase”, he said.

“The final exercise was definitely the most challenging part. Sleep deprivation and digging in the whole time was quite hard going but it was definitely worth it in the end as it is the first step on the promotion ladder.”

It was a real test of determination, leadership and inner courage as soldiers from The Highlanders, 4th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Scotland were joined by three soldiers from The Royal Scots Dragoon Guards .

Led by Captain Mike Altenhoven, training officer for the Highlanders, the cadre was to train soldiers in the skills that they would need as a non-commissioned officer in the infantry.

“We had soldiers come off the course at various stages and the final exercise is designed to be very challenging,” said Captain Altenhoeven.

“Being in the infantry section attacks, dismounted close quarter combat is very much our ‘bread and butter’ and we practise in all the time.”