New Bri­tish Army DEMS train­ing reg­i­ment opens


The Bri­tish Army has of­fi­cially opened its new De­fence Ex­plo­sive ord­nance dis­posal, Mu­ni­tions and Search Train­ing Reg­i­ment (DEMS Trg Regt) at a new £100-mil­lion train­ing fa­cil­ity at St Ge­orge’s Bar­racks, Bices­ter. The train­ing reg­i­ment was of­fi­cially stood up by Gen­eral Sir Peter Wall, Chief of the Gen­eral Staff (CGS), on March 15.

At any one time the train­ing school at Bices­ter is likely to host up to 200 staff and 300 stu­dents and is con­sid­ered a cen­tre of ex­cel­lence in train­ing ser­vice per­son­nel to deal with the threat posed by im­pro­vised ex­plo­sive de­vices (IEDs). The reg­i­ment will teach a num­ber of dis­ci­plines and tech­niques, in­clud­ing IED search and dis­posal, and un­der­wa­ter dis­posal.

The new DEMS Trg Regt HQ re­places the pre­vi­ous fa­cil­ity at Lodge Hill in Kent, bring­ing to­gether per­son­nel from all three ser­vices. The school stretches more than 80 hectares and in­cludes 32 sep­a­rate spe­cial­ist train­ing spa­ces in­clud­ing a cave com­plex and ex­plo­sive ord­nance dis­posal (EOD) dive pool.

At the open­ing of the fa­cil­ity, Gen­eral Sir Peter Wall said “Our ex­plo­sive search and dis­posal teams do one of the most dan­ger­ous roles in the armed forces of­ten in the most hos­tile of en­vi­ron­ments. Their ex­per­tise and train­ing is vi­tal in sup­port­ing our troops to meet the chal­lenges they face while on ac­tive ser­vice. This new £100-mil­lion fa­cil­ity will for the first time bring their train­ing un­der one roof and will se­cure the train­ing into the fu­ture.”

Lt Colonel Chris Hen­son, Com­mand­ing Of­fi­cer DEMS Trg Regt, added “This is an ab­so­lutely first class train­ing fa­cil­ity bring­ing to­gether ex­per­tise from across the ser­vices and marks a ma­jor mile­stone in de­liv­er­ing EOD and search ca­pa­bil­ity to de­fence.”

Over the course of a year 4,000 stu­dents will pass through the fa­cil­ity tak­ing part in one of the 73 cour­ses of­fered.

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