First female to join RAF's infantry unit since ban was lifted

Woman, 19, becomes first female to join RAF’s infantry unit since ban was lifted two years ago

  • Georgia Sandover, 19, is first woman to join RAF’s infantry unit since a ban lifted 
  • She completed a 20-week course which involved live firing and fitness tests 
  • She is one of 18 recruits who have just completed their Phase 2 training at RAF Honington to become RAF Regiment Gunners

A teenager has become the first woman to join the RAF’s infantry unit since a ban was lifted more than two years ago.

Leading Aircraftman Georgia Sandover, 19, managed to complete a 20-week course which involved live firing and gruelling fitness tests.

Another woman quit in 2018 after just two weeks of training when she fell behind on endurance marches and failed the fitness tests.

Leading Aircraftman Georgia Sandover (pictured), 19, managed to complete a 20-week course to become the first woman to join the RAF’s infantry unit since a ban was lifted two years ago

LAC Sandover is one of 18 recruits who have just completed their Phase 2 training at RAF Honington to become RAF Regiment Gunners. ‘I am really proud and thrilled that all of us on the course graduated today,’ she said.

‘To anyone that is thinking of joining the RAF Regiment, male or female, I say ‘don’t be afraid to give it a go’.’

She said she had always wanted to join one of the services and had been inspired by one of her teachers at the College of West Anglia who had been in the RAF Regiment – the Air Force’s ground fighting force, which protects RAF bases, aircraft and equipment at home and abroad.

The RAF course sees recruits learn basic combat tactics, advanced fieldcraft skills and completed live fire training, alongside a physical training programme. (Stock image)

During the RAF course the recruits learned basic combat tactics, advanced fieldcraft skills and completed live fire training, alongside a physical training programme. 

This included a 2.5-mile march carrying 88lbs with a rifle in less than 50 minutes and a 1.25-mile run carrying 55lbs in less than 16 minutes

An RAF spokesman said the latter part of the course was both ‘physically and mentally demanding’.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: ‘My congratulations to all those graduating today which includes the first female regular serving RAF Gunner.’

A handful of women have already taken up frontline roles within the Army.

 

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