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Leiston paratrooper named best in class during leadership course

PUBLISHED: 10:00 05 February 2017 | UPDATED: 10:15 05 February 2017

7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery leadership course. Soldiers run up Pen-Y-Fan. Photo: Georgina Couple RLC

7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery leadership course. Soldiers run up Pen-Y-Fan. Photo: Georgina Couple RLC

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A Colchester-based paratrooper from Leiston was named as best officer during a demanding leadership course.

7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery leadership course. Lance Bombardier Guy Sadler, from Leiston. Photo: Georgina Couple RLC7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery leadership course. Lance Bombardier Guy Sadler, from Leiston. Photo: Georgina Couple RLC

Lance Bombardier Guy Sadler, 23, was one of 29 soldiers from 7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery to complete the month-long course, designed to give them the skills and experience to be promoted.

The airborne gunners began with classroom lessons about command, leadership and management, before moving to the rugged terrain of Sennybridge in South Wales.

Troops were there put through their paces on infantry tactics and living in the field, before a loaded march up the 886m summit of Pen y Fan in freezing conditions.

After a challenge day in London to test their initiative, they returned to Merville Barracks in Colchester to discuss what they had learnt.

7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery leadership course. Soldiers complete a gun run. Photo: Georgina Couple RLC7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery leadership course. Soldiers complete a gun run. Photo: Georgina Couple RLC

The course finished with a gun run around the barracks and a parade attended by Brigadier Colin Weir, Commander of 16 Air Assault Brigade.

Former Leiston Community High School pupil LBdr Sadler, who has served for four years, was named best Junior Non-Commissioned Officer, while 24-year-old Gunner Ben Larsen, from Dorset, was named best potential Non-Commissioned Officer.

LBdr Sadler said: “The course has been a real stretch and I’m very proud to receive this award.

“For me, having confidence in your actions as a leader is the key thing I’ve learnt. Confidence inspires others, while if you approach something half-hearted then the soldiers you are leading will pick up on that and not perform to the best of their abilities.”

7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery leadership course. Survival instructor  Bomardier Arron Jackson shows troops how to light a fire. Photo: Georgina Couple RLC7th Parachute Regiment Royal Horse Artillery leadership course. Survival instructor Bomardier Arron Jackson shows troops how to light a fire. Photo: Georgina Couple RLC

Captain Max Clark, who ran the course, said: “I’m really proud of the soldiers’ performance across the course and how they’ve endured and overcome the challenges they’ve been given.

“We always do this in January because cold weather adds a bit of extra pressure and we can see the raw spirit of our soldiers come through in the face of the elements.”

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