The aim of the Junior Leaders’ Regiment was to train the boys to become future Non-Commissioned Officers and Warrant Officers of their chosen Regiments/Corps in their adult service.
Life in the Regiment was demanding and varied. Apart from general military training such as drill, field craft and weapon training, expert instruction was given in gunnery and radio operating. This training was designed to prepare the young soldier for his future role as a tank or armoured car crewman. Specialist training was also provided for boys joining other Corps.
To support these military and technical subjects, part of the training was given over to military studies in which subjects such as trade science, communication skills and military affairs were taught. As in all work of the Regiment, emphasis was placed upon the development of leadership qualities.
For outdoor training the Regiment had an Adventure Training Centre at Renney Lentney near Dartmoor where the young soldiers spent two weeks of each 14 week term taking part in outdoor activities such as potholing, sailing, rock climbing, orienteering and cliff rescue.
Of course it was not all hard work. Clubs and hobbies were held twice a week and offered a wide range of activities from sub-aqua diving to water skiing, and archery to go-karting. Sport was part of the weekly training programme and there was also ample opportunity for competitive sport against outside clubs and other Junior Regiments.
Life as a Junior Leader might have been tough but it was never dull. “We joined as boys and left as men.”