The military have spent many, many years training in Kenya and it has proved to be an excellent training ground. Whilst soldiers were and are given the opportunity to experience the wildlife and African culture the average soldier has probably limited his education to saying ‘Jambo’ fluently, using Tusker Beer to ensure he was hydrated at all times and being able to identify the ‘Big Five’, or at the very least an elephant!
Training in Kenya usually takes the same format. There is a BATLSK Team stationed permanently at Kahawa Camp outside Nairobi, and this is a prestigious posting for those lucky enough to get it. This does unfortunately lead to the permanent staff barricading themselves in and sending units up country as quickly as possible. Declaring the Camp dry except for the permanent staff is a favourite trick and one that is strangely enough not appreciated by the troops.
Up country the Battalion Headquarters are normally located at the Showground in Nanyuki where they can get stuck into preparing the Beating Retreat and reception for the local expats.
For exercises and field firing the Companies are pushed even further up country to locations like Mpala Farm, Sam’s Farm, Dol Dol and Gatheru to name a few.
Africa is an experience that should be savoured by all; The sights, the sounds, the smell is something that will never be forgotten.