Reservists wear their military uniforms to civilian jobs with pride today

Leading Naval Nurse Denise Wright Pictures: Stewart Turkington
Leading Naval Nurse Denise Wright Pictures: Stewart Turkington
Picture: Malcolm Wells

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ARMED forces reservists across the area have swapped their usual work attire for military rig to highlight their contribution to the services.

Today is Reserves Day, which is held to recognise the important part reservists play in supporting the military over and above their day jobs.

Able Seaman Harnish Patel

Able Seaman Harnish Patel

As part of the annual event, reservists will be turning up to work in their uniforms.

One of those taking part is Able Seaman Harnish Patel, from Havant, who has a full-time career as a chartered surveyor working for Hughes Ellard in Fareham and is a member of the Royal Naval Reserve.

He said: ‘Everything I do is at a high level both in my civilian career and my reserve career, so you have to maintain your professionalism at all times.

‘As a reservist we are trained to do just that.

‘Being a naval reservist gives me the adventure and challenge that I crave.

‘It is all about team work, it trains you to deal with all sorts of challenges and I really enjoy it.’

AB Patel is based at HMS King Alfred in Portsmouth, one of the country’s largest naval reserve units which is growing in numbers.

Another naval reservist donning her uniform for the day is Leading Naval Nurse Denise Wright, of Bishop’s Waltham.

She works for the Royal Hampshire County Hospital in Winchester.

She said: ‘Being a member of the reserves has taught me so much which has helped with my NHS career, leadership and management skills especially.

‘I am really keen to do a tour of operational duty with the Royal Navy as soon as the opportunity arises. It is what a reservist strives and trains to achieve.’

As well as being home to HMS King Alfred, Portsmouth and the surrounding areas has seen an increase in recent years of the number of Army Reserve 
units.

It comes after the government decided to increase numbers of the reserve forces.