Rower Pippa Birch may become first female Royal Marine
Pippa Birch has been dubbed “GI Pippa” by her instructors according to press reports, a reference to the 1997 Hollywood film GI Jane, starring Demi Moore. Her acceptance into the 32-week Basic Training program follows David Cameron’s decision in 2016 to lift a centuries-old ban on women serving in close-combat regiments.
Birch, who is 25, will be expected to do the same weapons and fitness tests as any male recruit. A defence spokesman said “‘She’s already shown us that she’s highly motivated, physically fit and intelligent. It is very, very early days but everyone is keeping their fingers crossed that she succeeds. This is an exciting time for her and for the Royal Marines.”