Recruiting goes on as Army cuts 6,500 jobs: Recruiting continues while nearly 6,500 troops are being made redundant. Christopher Bellamy reports

NEARLY 6,500 soldiers received redundancy notices yesterday morning, 97 of them serving with UN forces in Bosnia and Croatia and 345 in Northern Ireland, as part of the Government's plans to bring the Army's strength down to 119,000 by 1994.

But 2,500 people are queuing up to join the Army, and 70 per cent of those taking redundancy can expect to be in full-time employment or higher education three months after leaving.

The vast majority, including all the non-commissioned ranks, were volunteers, but eight officers serving in the former Yugoslavia and 36 in Ulster have been made compulsorily redundant.

'We couldn't possibly exclude any one part of the Army from that. You can't exclude someone because he happened to be serving somewhere on 25 February,' General Sir David Ramsbotham, the Adjutant General - the Army's 'head of personnel' - said yesterday.

'It's not a day the Army's particularly happy about.'

Good resettlement terms have always been recognised as an attraction to recruits, and although the Army is getting smaller, it still has to recruit.

Lt-Col Geoff Bradbury has been sent to Bosnia to act as resettlement officer for the 97 soldiers and officers there. In Germany, the Department of Employment has set up a job centre. General Ramsbotham said the staff had been impressed by the attitude of the service applicants.

The redundancies are spread across the Army, not confined to regiments being reduced or amalgamated under the Government's plans.

The guidelines for selecting people for redundancy were set out in two Defence Council Instructions last year.

The aim was to reduce the 'soldier strength' and the 'officer corps in such a way as to ensure a proper structure and balance of experience and specialisation for the future'.

The number of officers and other ranks to be made redundant is set out for each arm or service - armour, artillery, infantry and so on, not for individual armoured or infantry regiments.

In each category, older men were targeted. In the infantry, the largest category were corporals with between nine and twenty years' service, with between 600 and 640 being made redundant world-wide. Among infantry officers, up to 120 are on the 'special list' - captains to lieutenant-colonels commissioned from the ranks. The corresponding number of regular officers is between 20 and 30.

A major aged 46 will get a special payment of pounds 47,364, a terminal grant of pounds 35,352 and an annual pension of pounds 11,784. A corporal aged 29 will get a pounds 27,942 special payment, with a terminal grant of pounds 7,105 and a pension of pounds 2,368, preserved until he is 60.

Two weeks ago, General Ramsbotham was in Croatia and Bosnia, 'to ensure that everything was in place'.

Those taking voluntary redundancy have eight months before leaving the Army, those compulsorily redundant 12.

Service personnel who wish to do so are normally allowed to spend the last six months of their service in Britain - so those currently engaged in emergency tours in Northern Ireland and Bosnia will be allowed to remain in the Army for six months after their tours end.

Some of those who applied for redundancy did so, in part, because their regiments were being merged.

'Anyone who put in papers and now feels he wouldn't have done so has grounds for appeal,' General Ramsbotham said.

(Photograph omitted)

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Service Delivery Manager

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Service Delivery Manager is required to join...

Recruitment Genius: Massage Therapist / Sports Therapist

£12000 - £24000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A opportunity has arisen for a ...

Ashdown Group: Practice Accountant - Bournemouth - £38,000

£32000 - £38000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful accountancy practice in...

SThree: Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped commission: SThree: Does earning a 6 figu...

Day In a Page

The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

The saffron censorship that governs India

Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

How did fandom get so dark?

Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

Disney's mega money-making formula

'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

Lobster has gone mainstream

Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

14 best Easter decorations

Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

Paul Scholes column

Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

The future of GM

The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

Britain's mild winters could be numbered

Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

Cowslips vs honeysuckle

It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss