British Army Soldier Who Died in Training Accident Named

By Alexander Zhang
Alexander Zhang
Alexander Zhang
October 18, 2021 Updated: October 18, 2021

A British soldier who died during an Army training exercise last Friday has been named as Private Jethro Watson-Pickering.

Watson-Pickering, 23, of the 1st Battalion of the Yorkshire Regiment, was a member of a crew operating an armoured vehicle in a training area in Wiltshire, when the incident happened.

In a statement, the regiment said it “very much regrets” to announce the death of Private Watson-Pickering.

“The thoughts and prayers of the regimental family are with his family,” the statement said.

An Army spokesman said: “It is with sadness that we can confirm the death of Private Jethro Watson-Pickering in an incident on Salisbury Plain training area. The thoughts and sympathies of the Army are with the family and friends of Pte Watson-Pickering at this very sad time.”

Wiltshire Police said it had launched a joint investigation with the Health and Safety Executive and the British Army.

Salisbury Plain British Army training exercise
A convoy of armoured vehicles travels between camp locations during the UK Task Group Mission Rehearsal Exercise ahead of their deployment to Mali, on the Ministry of Defence training area on Salisbury Plain in England on Oct. 14, 2020. (Leon Neal/Getty Images)

“We are investigating the circumstances following the death of a 23-year-old soldier at midday on Oct. 15,” said a spokesman for Wiltshire Police.

“He was part of a crew operating an armoured vehicle and was taking part in a military exercise on Salisbury Plain Training Area near the village of Enford,” the spokesman said, adding, “This is now a joint investigation between Wiltshire Police, the Army and the Health and Safety Executive.”

Danny Kruger, the Conservative MP for Devizes in Wiltshire, expressed condolences to the soldier’s family and comrades.

“It is vital that all serious accidents that take place during military training exercises are comprehensively investigated,” he said, adding, “We owe so much to the young men and women who risk their lives for our safety and we must do everything we can to keep them safe as well.”

According to local news outlet Wiltshire Today, the soldier was fatally injured when the vehicle rolled over.

PA contributed to this report.