Three serving members of 4624 (County of Oxford) Movements Squadron joined 150 reservists and their employers at this year’s Reserves Day reception held in the House of Commons on 21 Jun 17. Hosted by Sir Michael Fallon, Secretary of State for Defence, it recognised the valuable contribution reservists and employers make to the defence of the nation and it was also an opportunity for reservists across all three services to share experiences.
One of those attending was SAC Pauline Griffiths-Jeans, a member of the Contract Monitoring Team at RAF Brize Norton who was accompanied by her line manager FS Neil Baker. He was impressed with both the calibre of reservists and support shown by employers. “As a representative of the full time military it was fascinating to see the diversity and quality of individuals who are employed in the reservist cadre. On speaking with the civilian employers present the military skill-set gained through reserve service offers benefits that are very much in demand. It was clear from the varied conversations I had during the reception that there was a very welcome and positive drive to capitalise on this skill-set”.
SAC Shelley Terrell attended the reception with Mr Jim Hartshorne, VP of DHL Operations for Home and Specialist Retail. “It was a chance for us to discuss what DHL offers in support of Reservists and opportunities for full time service leavers. Without the support of DHL I would not have been able to mobilise to RAF Akrotiri in May 16”.
Making up ‘Team 4624’ was Sgt Andy Franklin, SNCO D Flight, who has responsibility for the administration, training and development of 25 junior ranks on one of the four Operational Flights on 4624 Squadron. “Outside the RAF Reserves I am a Quality Auditor with the Ordnance Survey, the UK’s national mapping agency. I have responsibility for checking the quality and accuracy of geographical information and datasets that make up the national mapping database”. The event was, he said, “.. an opportunity for MPs to pay tribute to the valuable and much relied on service provided by the Reserve forces and a verbal thank you for the companies and managers who allow their employees to embark on this challenging adventure. It was a good opportunity to meet other reserve force members from all three services and relate to their experiences…”
Although the event was held on one of the hottest days of the year, and despite being dressed in their No.1 uniform, ‘Team 4624’ certainly maintained their cool and clearly made the most of the tea and cake on offer!