A partnership between Regular and Reservist soldiers to supply and maintain the British Army’s helicopters on the battlefield has been tested for the first time.
7th Aviation Support Battalion Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (7th Avn Sp Bn REME) and 158 Regiment Royal Logistic Corps (158 Regt RLC) have joined forces on Exercise Iron Titan to practice how they would operate together to keep helicopters flying and in the fight.
The troops have set up camp at Swynnerton in Staffordshire to support Apache and Wildcat helicopters flying strike and reconnaissance missions out of Nesscliffe, some 40 miles away in Shropshire. It is the time the force – called a Brigade Support Group (BSG) in military jargon – has worked together, and key tasks include keeping the aviation units supplied with fuel and ammunition and providing specialist repair and maintenance capabilities for helicopters.
Exercise Iron Titan is about testing the ability of enablers and sustainment units – such as engineers, signallers and logistics – to deliver combat units to the right place at the right time and in the right condition to win the battle. The six-week-long manoeuvres involve 6,000 troops working out of 22 locations across the South West, West Midlands and Wales.