Parents & Guardians
This section will enable your parents to answer any queries they may have about you becoming a Royal Welsh Soldier. They can also get a glimpse of what your life will be like while you are still in training and once you have become a Royal Welsh Soldier - ranging from the care and support you will receive as a recruit to your career progression, and continuing education while you are serving in the Battalion.
Staying in Touch
At Catterick during training:
Staying in touch with your son during his time at Catterick is easy.
Mobile phones are allowed within the barracks and most recruits tend to use them at night when their working day has finished. If he does not have a mobile phone there are plenty of pay phones around camp that he is free to use.
Post is delivered/collected daily to and from the Recruits, so that birthday cards, letters or postcards will all get to your son in the quickest time possible.
Once your son is in the Royal Welsh:
Once your son has left Catterick he will have the ability to email, phone or write to you whilst at his unit. Each unit has the same facilities as Catterick and they are available to all personnel.
Whilst deployed on military operations or overseas training exercises:
On operations all ranks will be given an allocation of time on a satellite phone so that they may ring home.
Depending on where they are operating there is usually the facility to email, and of course they can write. The Service provides free letters, known as "Blueys" because of their colour and is the favoured method of writing home. Parents, wives and girlfriends can send Blueys, and these are free of charge and do not require a stamp. E-Blueys can be sent via the internet and this is often a lot quicker than hand writing them - the unit or ship will print them out in theatre and they will then be delivered to your son within a few days.
On training exercises and operations every effort is made to ensure all ranks can communicate with those at home. However, the security situation may preclude this. Satellite phones and email facilities should always be available. Also, the normal mail system - managed by the British Forces Post Office - can be relied upon.
The Royal Welsh offers soldiers fantastic career progression opportunities. If you work hard enough and shown signs of leadership potential then you will be nurtured and given the chance to progress up the Army rank structure.
As you move further up the rank structure you will be given additional responsibilities but will also be well rewarded with more pay and benefits. Everyone has the chance to make something of themselves in the Royal Welsh and there are so many different jobs that you are guaranteed to find one that suits you.
The Royal Welsh understands the importance of looking after its most precious resource, its soldiers. At each of our barracks we have an Army Education Centre that provides access to both personnel and professional education courses. At these centres you can do basic Maths and English courses, or if you want to, even study for GCSEs or NVQs. The centres also run IT courses such as the ECDL, or for the less experienced computer user they do basic computer skills courses.
All the professional courses the Regiment have to offer are also civilian accredited so the qualifications you receive are recognised in civilian street. Ever soldier is entitled once a year to use their Standard and Enhanced Learning Credits which is access to a fund which they can use to help pay towards an education course of their choice. The chances for education and personnel and professional development are immence. It really is up to you as to how far you want to take it.
Wives and Partners
The wives and partners of serving Royal Welsh all share a common bond. You will often find that whilst their loved ones are away on exercises or military operations, wives and partners will come together to support each other.
During these informal meetings, information on what the Royal Welsh have been doing is shared and any fears or concerns are allayed. There is a tri-Service information network available to all members of the Service community - and Welfare Officers will also ensure the wellbeing of partners and children are their main concern.
The facilities and support offered is of the highest standard. Every effort is made to make sure those remaining at home are kept informed and as happy as possible. The sports facilities, messes and housing will all be available to wives and partners during a military deployment. These are often a good focal point for a cup of coffee or dinner evenings.
This website will give you regular updates on the movements of the Royal Welsh whilst away on military operations.
Service Families Accommodation is provided for married personnel. Rent is significantly lower than that for privately rented accommodation of a similar standard. For example, if you had 2 children you would pay (including Contribution In Lieu of Council Tax (CILOCT)) £305 per month for furnished accommodation. The commercial rate for a similar property in Catterick area is upwards of £550.
Boarding School Allowance
Depending on the age of the child this could be worth more £12,000 a year (per child) and will allow you to educate your child privately for, in some cases, as little as 10% of the fees. Grossed up for tax (at 40%), BSA (senior) is worth over £20,000 per year per child.
“When my son first told me he was joining the Royal Welsh I was very nervous for him. I had heard about the Royal Welsh on the news and knew that they had been fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Luckily my son did a lot of research on the subject and found out exactly what he would be asked to do. This eased my mind slightly knowing that he knew what he was getting in to. Once he joined up and started his training at the Catterick Training Centre we visited him and learnt all about his training - what he would be likely to do once he left training; and about how the Royal Welsh really look after their own.
The facilities at the Catterick Training Centre were first rate and I got a really good feeling that my son would be looked after and very well fed.
We visited the Training Centre again when my son completed his training. There was a full day dedicated to his platoon and their Pass Out. Everyone made it feel really special and I was so proud of him for completing such a challenging course. During this last visit I received lots of information on who I can get in touch with when/if he goes to Afghanistan. Also, how my son will stay in touch with our family and his girlfriend.
I managed to see my son quite a few times during his time at the Training Centre. I feel becoming a Royal Welsh Soldier has improved him as a person - he is much more respectful, thoughtful and confident in himself and his abilities.”
Mrs ST from Cardiff
“When my son told me he wanted to join the Army I had my reservations. I had a few mates who had been in the Services and they reassured me that it was a good choice and that it is a good career for a young lad.
Before he signed up we both went along to a 'meet the Royal Welsh at the local County Show. They told us what they had done and how much they enjoyed the job and the lifestyle that it gave them. This reinforced my son's desire to join and after he had passed the Potential Royal Welsh Course, he joined a month or so later.
We visited him during his time in Catterick, here we had a good chat to his Section Commander and the Sergeant. Both were really nice people and set my mind at rest that they were doing their best to get him through the training. They had all been through it themselves and knew what the recruits were going through. I found the visit really good; everyone seemed very professional and focused.”
Mr AW from Wrexham