Royal Irish Regiment Ranger, Helmand, 2008

This month’s impression brings us much more up to date with a recreation of a ranger from the Royal Irish Regiment, deployed to Helmand Province in Afghanistan in 2008. The Royal Irish were deployed to Helmand as part of Operation Herrick VIII to train the indigenous Afghan Army and Police force and today’s impression draws heavily on photographs published in Richard Doherty’s book Helmand Mission which charted this deployment. Some compromises have been made, and since taking the photographs I have been informed that the goggles used here were actually obsolete by this date and had been replaced with different patterns so please bear that in mind.

Our Ranger is wearing a pair of Desert DPM trousers, together with a brown anti-static self wicking t-shirt. He wears Lowa boots and has the early (and not very good) knee pads velcroed around each knee. His helmet is the Mk 6, with a desert DPM cover to which has been sewn the TRF for the Royal Irish Battlegroup consisting of a green shamrock on a black square. A pair of Scott goggles are worn to protect against dust and he has a pair of leather gloves in desert DPM print on his hands. His body armour is the Osprey Mk III set with a camelback water bladder secured to the back. A minimal set of pouches are worn on the body armour with a single ammunition pouch, one grenade pouch and a first aid pouch on the hip. As was common with many soldiers, a bayonet for his SA80 and a Sharpie permanent marker pen are held in the PALS loops on the front of the vest. The rifle is the standard L85A2 version of the SA80, the standard British Army rifle.

  1. CS95 Desert DPM Trousers
  2. SA80 Rifle
  3. Mk 6 Helmet with DDPM cover and goggles
  4. Osprey Mk III bodyarmour with Camelbak, bayonet and sharpie
  5. Knee Pads
  6. DDPM Gloves
  7. Brown self wicking t-shirt
  8. Lowa boots

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