By Maya Chavvakula
A part-time soldier who joined the reserves at the age of 18 says it was the best decision he ever made.
Ryan Sharpe from Greenwich took part in the Reserves Day celebration today and talked about his love for the armed forces.
Reserves Day, on 26 June, recognises the invaluable contribution of the reservists to the British Army.
The reserves account for one sixth of the UK armed forces.
Sharpe applied to the Army when he was seventeen and he was accepted just as he turned 18 with no prior military experience.
Sharpe said: “I was interested in the army from a very young age.
“I wanted to make a difference in the society and the country and I felt like the reserve provided me with the opportunity.
“I think the reserve gives young people invaluable real-world skills that are transferrable to any profession.
“They offer funding for candidates to learn new skills and a lot of reservists get to travel the world.”
Sharpe is currently getting his Public Services degree from City of Westminster College and has been accepted into the Metropolitan police service.
He also works at the high street fashion shop, H&M, where he was recently promoted from sales advisor to admin clerk.
He attributes his success in his civilian job to the skills he gained in the British Army Reserves.