SOLDIERS from the Irish Guards have spent a week in North Devon carrying out team building exercises. The 19 men from Mortar Platoon, 1st Battalion, based in Aldershot, stayed at the Fremington army camp near Barnstaple, using it as a base for a week of o

SOLDIERS from the Irish Guards have spent a week in North Devon carrying out team building exercises.The 19 men from Mortar Platoon, 1st Battalion, based in Aldershot, stayed at the Fremington army camp near Barnstaple, using it as a base for a week of outdoor activities. They spent their final day at Yarnscombe, near Barnstaple, first at Survival Paintball, followed by Madtrax racing at Southdown Adventure."This was a well deserved break for the men," explained Captain Stephen Wolseley, in charge of the group. "Although they were still on duty it was good to get them out of the work environment, doing something different. Adventure sports are great for team building.""We try to do something like this for one or two weeks every year," added second in command Colour Sergeant John Gavin. " We like to go for things that have a bit of spice, something that is a bit different."The guardsmen did a six month tour of duty last year in Iraq and are due to be posted to Afganistan in 2010, where they will be based in the notoriously dangerous Helmand Province.Steve Moore, joint owner of Southdown Adventure, said he was delighted to welcome the soldiers. "The Irish Guards do such a great job fighting for this country, and they certainly deserve a break from their duties. This is the perfect place for them to let off steam, and have some fun. It was a wet and muddy afternoon, but the lads had a great time on our Madtrax Karts. The Karts have 400cc engines, which guarantees a pretty exciting ride!