Now, hundreds of Army reservists from the Westcountry are playing a more crucial role than ever on the frontline - as cutbacks by the MoD mean they're increasingly deployed to trouble spots around the globe.
In the first of a special series from Cyprus on the role of our Armed Forces, Francesca Carpenter has joined reservists from 6 Rifles, which are based in Exeter, on a training exercise.
More top news
After days of sunshine it's going to be a glum day tomorrow. For the rest of the week, it's sunshine and showers.
After the sunshine of recent days, it will be wet but mild overnight and expect a miserable day tomorrow
Some services are to relocate from Exeter Bus Station from Sunday 17 June to allow for work to start on a major redevelopment.