Pace-stick champion Darren calls the shots at Fusiliers regiment

WO1 (RSM) Darren Wilkinson .
WO1 (RSM) Darren Wilkinson .

Darren Wilkinson has recently taken over as Regimental Sergeant Major of the 5th Battalion The Royal Regiment of Fusiliers (5 RRF) which has a base in Alnwick.

He has served in many places during his 19 years of service, including Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Germany, Iraq and more recently Afghanistan.

Darren said: “My aspiration when I joined the Army was to become a Company Sergeant Major in The Fusiliers, so you can imagine I am thrilled to go one better and become RSM of 5RRF. My wife Ange and daughters Amber and Lily are delighted that we are now back in the North-East for the first time since I joined the Army, as they have supported me wherever I have been posted.

“I have always served with Regular soldiers, so working with the Army Reserve will be something very new to me. Both the Army and the Reserves will see huge changes over the next few years and recruiting for 5RRF will be a challenge.

“At our open day in Alnwick on November 9 we will be happy to welcome anyone who wants to find out about service in the Reserves.”

In 2008, as an instructor in Ypres Company at The Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst, he and his fellow instructors won the Academy Pace-Sticking Championship and went on to be runners-up in the world championship where 25 teams competed.

The pace-stick is used in the services to measure distances when on parade and there is a laid-down drill manual for its use.

It is carried by Warrant Officers in the forces.