STUDENTS swapped their schoolbags for deadly weapons this week.

Dozens of children from Huddersfield schools and colleges got to know something about the Army.

They were taking part in one of the biggest-ever recruiting events mounted by the Services.

The Army held the event in Bradford to help raise awareness of the career opportunities available to youngsters in the region.

Nearly 1,500 schoolchildren aged 14 to 18 from schools in Huddersfield and West Yorkshire went to the Richard Dunn Sports Centre at Odsal with some of their teachers.

Soldiers from more than 20 regiments hosted the event, which included communications demonstrations and weapons, camouflage and IT displays.

An Army medical team with a tented operating theatre gave students the chance to try out their IT and first aid skills.

Event organiser Maj Paul Larkman said: "This year's event was a real success, with hundreds of young people coming along to find out more about the Army.

"The main attractions - the abseil and indoor paint-balling range - proved a big hit with them.

"Events and exhibitions like these help us to highlight the wide range of career opportunities and benefits that Army life offers young people from all backgrounds.

"It also gives us an opportunity to talk to students and teachers about the further education, grants and training available.

"Everyone who came to the centre was able to talk to a serving soldier about their personal experiences. It's clear that our soldiers impressed everyone with their exciting and active lifestyles."

The Army has 15,000 vacancies. Recruits earn up to £266 per week when they join up and can choose from over 140 careers.

For further information, phone Huddersfield Army Careers Information Office on 01484 424868 or visit