DOZENS of students were plastered in mud, sweat and smiles after taking on the challenge of training at an Army super camp.

Up to 50 youngsters from two North-East towns were shown the ropes by military personnel during a 36-hour residential stay at Catterick Garrison, in North Yorkshire.

Teenagers from Stockton and Middlesbrough were given first-hand experience of Army life during their overnight stay at Wathgill Camp in the Catterick training area.

Colonel Andy Hadfield, deputy commander of 4th Infantry Brigade at Catterick Garrison, who organised the camp, said: “We aim to improve the personal, teamwork and leadership skills of participants through engagement in challenging military themed activities.

“We seek to promote the breadth of opportunities on offer within the army cadets, junior entry, army reserve and regular army and return participants to their communities with a greater understanding of the British Army.”

On the first day of the residential, students from Grangefield Academy, in Stockton, and McMillan Academy, in Middlesbrough, were able to enjoy an indoor electric shooting range before working through command tasks and drill.

They also learnt about outdoor survival and cooking and fieldcraft.

Their second day saw the students being introduced to a variety of trades within the Army, with stands showing the work of the Royal Military Police, the Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, the Royal Artillery and the Infantry and medical stands.

Teacher Jo Brack, from Grangefield Academy, said: “I think they have got so much out of it this year. The games they have been playing and the different activities has allowed them to develop their leadership skills and team-building skills. It has really got them out of their comfort zone which has been interesting.

“Much of it has been about character development but they have all really enjoyed every aspect of the camp.”

Calum, 15, who attends Grangefield Academy said he was keen on joining the Army.

“One of the best things was the firing range which was a lot of fun. It was full on and everybody got really involved. I have learned to be a lot more disciplined and have been able to make a lot more friends and it just helped me in general.”