10,000 Army reservists targeted

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond has set a target of recruiting 10,000 army reservists in five years. He revealed that there have been 1,576 applications so far.

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  1. Chris Ship

Hammond's figures suggest reservist targets achievable

After the UK's most senior general admitted an Army recruitment drive for part time soldiers had got off to a "wobbly start" there have been concerns about whether the Ministry of Defence will hit its ambitious targets.

In order to offset a cut of 20,000 in the size of the Regular Army - the MoD is committed to increasing the size of the Army Reserve (the new name for the Territorial Army) by a third - from 19,000 to 30,000.

Leaked memos have suggested the target will be very difficult to reach.

However, the Defence Secretary has just told the House of Commons that 1,576 applications have been received since the campaign was launched.

And last week the Army Reserve recruitment team received 380 applications.

Given the MoD needs only to recruit an average of 42 reservists per week, it would appear this target might be easier to reach than even the MoD's own generals anticipate.

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