Members of the Reserve Forces are today swapping their civilian clothes for military uniforms to celebrate ‘Wear Your Uniform To Work Day’, which highlights the crucial role played by Reservists in our country’s Armed Forces. There are some 38,000 Reservists in the UK Armed Forces and they have been deployed around 24,000 times since 2003 on operations around the globe, including Afghanistan and in support of the NATO mission in Libya.
Uniform to Work Day provides an opportunity to celebrate the role of the Reserves and to remind the public the Armed Forces are made up of people from all sections of the community, from office workers to taxi drivers.
Three London-based Reservists shown here cycling to work are Able Seaman Richie Wilkinson (Royal Navy Reserve) a Studio Manager for ITV who also serves as a Communication Warfare Technician at HMS President, Lance Corporal Mark Herbage (Territorial army) who is employed by the Royal British Legion in addition to being a Signaller in the Honourable Artillery Company and Flight Lieutenant James Morris (Royal Auxiliary Air Force) a Civil Servant working in the Department for International Development and a Royal Air Force Police Officer at No.3 Police Squadron, RAF Henlow.
Service Chiefs of Staff lent their support to Uniform to Work Day by joining Reservists who were wearing their uniform to work and hopping on public transport to the Ministry of Defence.
Army Chief General Sir Peter Wall met Lance Corporal Vergottini, a tube driver on the Northern Line. LCpl Vergottini spent six months in Afghanistan last year as part of the Counter-IED (Improvised Explosive Device) Task Force, providing infantry support for the specialist C-IED operators. LCpl Vergottini said:
“I’m proud of being part of the TA and all that I’ve achieved there and today is an opportunity for me to show the public that, behind my usual work clothes, I also serve my country. I completed a tour of Afghanistan last year, but most of the time I look like any other civilian. The support we get from the public and our employers on Uniform to Work Day is a huge boost to morale for me and my fellow TA soldiers.”