Fighting an invisible war — Corporal James Browne
James Browne has been deployed to Canada, Estonia and Denmark but has recently been tasked with a very different type of operation — supporting Covid testing in Liverpool.
As a Corporal in the Yorkshire Regiment, James’s role usually finds him conducting reconnaissance patrols and drills with his Armoured Infantry Battalion, based in Catterick.
“My job is to make sure that my team’s ready to be deployed at any moment and keep all our skill sets sharpened. We work in a team of 8, and being the section commander I’ve got my own small team. You get really close with your own section and you get to learn off each other as well.”
In November, his team answered the call to assist mass testing across the city of Liverpool. Working at Liverpool’s Exhibition Centre, he administered COVID-19 tests to the public and gathered the results.
“Obviously we were away from our families , which was quite hard for some of the lads, but everyone’s been really warm and welcoming.
“The main thing for me is that we actually made some sort of difference within the country. Everything’s gone to a bit of a standstill with everybody in lockdown but in the latest figures that have come out, Liverpool has now gone into Tier 2. So that means that some people here can now go and see their family over Christmas and that’s down to what we’ve been doing here.
“My battalion was basically the spearhead of what’s happening so we were dead centre of making the biggest difference. I’m really proud of how everything’s been run, and how we’ve managed to push this out to the public.
“And we’ve been finding people are asymptomatic. They could have been spreading it anywhere and passing on to relatives — so in effect we’re saving lives as well.
“It’s a different type of war we’re fighting now with this virus. It’s obviously an invisible one, which makes it all the more important.”