A former Islander has just been promoted to Captain in the Army.
Stuart Natt, 40, grew up in Bembridge and went to Sandown High School.
After leaving school, he completed an apprenticeship as a chef before joining the Army in 1997 aged 17.
Stuart said: “I’ve been very fortunate to have such a varied career. I’ve done many things that not many other people have had the opportunity to do.”
His career has involved a steady rise up the ladder. He was a Sapper when he toured Northern Ireland, a Lance Corporal in Iraq and a Sergeant in Afghanistan and has also served in Jordan, Saudi Arabia, the Falklands and Ascension Island.
Stu added: “I’ve had a variety of jobs involving air support working with Harrier Jump Jets, recruiting, bomb disposal and trial and experimentation. I’ve been involved in the testing of new explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) and, working with the industry, to make sure we are getting the right equipment to our soldiers on the ground.
“I’ve been lucky to do so much but I think the highlight was when I was made Warrant Officer in 2018; it meant I had worked my way up all the ranks as a soldier.
“Being captain means I am a commissioned officer and I will be second in command of a squadron. It will extend my Army career by 10 years but I don’t know exactly what job I will be given; I probably won’t find out until December.”
Stu has been married to Jo, formerly of Yarmouth, for 19 years and they have two children William, nine, and Olivia, seven.
He added: “We’re currently based in Bicester but the new job will almost certainly mean we’ll be on the move again.”