Man reserves energy for warfare training

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A Royal Marines Reservist recently returned from cold climate warfare training in the Arctic Circle - a far cry from his normal daily activity as managing director of a security company.

Peter Harrison, 30, of Ellel, near Lancaster, spent two weeks camping out in the far north of Norway in temperatures of -20 Celsius, both in tents and snow holes, skied long distances with a brutally heavy rucksack and finished it all off by jumping into a pool of icy water through a hole cut in a frozen lake.

A reservist for the last four years, Peter’s other claim to fame is he once appeared on TV show Dragon’s Den. He is part of Royal Marines Reserves (RMR) unit Merseyside and with three colleagues, climbed the formidable Mont Blanc mountain last year.

He said: “I always wanted to join the Royal Marines and had my first interview, to join as an officer, aged just 15.

“I passed the Potential Officer’s course at 17 but then failed the final selection at the Admiralty interview board.

“So that was that, I wasn’t going to be an officer.

“Then I started my own company. But being part of the RMR has made me see life from a different angle. It’s far tougher than I expected and the limits we push ourselves to keep increasing.

“In a course full of exceedingly hard things, the ones that stood out are staying awake on sentry duty following days of sleep deprivation and snow-shoe races up steep hills in very deep snow!”

Situated at 70 degrees north, the Porsangmoen training area is several hundred miles inside the Arctic Circle.

Peter continued: “It was all a bit of a contrast with the last course I completed with the RMR, learning to be a Landing Craft coxswain.

“Life in the reserves is certainly varied.”