The number of Army reserves in Northern Ireland will increase by nearly 200, Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson has announced….

The stepped up commitment underlines the military’s strong ties with Northern Ireland, which currently hosts around 2000 reserves and nearly 2000 regular personnel.

Mr Williamson made the announcement while visiting Northern Ireland based reservists from 152 (North Irish) Regiment, The Royal Logistic Corps and 2nd Battalion, the Royal Irish Regiment.

During the visit he also received an update on defence activities in Northern Ireland, including from 38 (Irish) Brigade, and met personnel helping keep the community safe by delivering niche explosive ordnance disposal and search support to the Police Service of Northern Ireland.

189 new reserve posts will be created, an increase of 9%, and will take overall Army reserve posts to 2100 by the end of the year.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said: “Our reserves programme is immensely popular in Northern Ireland, with more than twice as many people from Northern Ireland volunteering compared to the national average. So I’m delighted to increase the Army’s reserve numbers in Northern Ireland, underlining the military’s commitment to the entire United Kingdom.”