A WINCHESTER man’s efforts have finally paid off and have seen him through to the Princess of Wales' Royal Regiment.

Sam Jeffries, 26, from Alresford, joined the second battalion of the Princess of Wales' Royal Regiment (PWRR) as a platoon commander after completing the Officer Commissioning Course at the Royal Military Academy in Sandhurst in December.

The former Peter Symonds College student spent a year abroad working on a coral reef preservation and animal sanctuary before studying chemistry at university.

Sam went on to work in sales and recruitment but the former Perins School pupil eventually realised a life in the armed forces was the challenge he was looking for.

Sam said: “I always felt unfulfilled and an element of guilt that perhaps I could be doing more or pushing myself further.

“Sandhurst was completely new to me, coming from no military back ground, and every day was both challenging and rewarding, it has changed me for the better.

“As a platoon commander I will be responsible for the lives of roughly 30 soldiers - a big challenge and responsibility, but mainly a privilege. I also look forward to relocating to Cyprus later in 2014.”

His mother, Jenny Jeffries, 64, said: “Sam is very determined and always trying something out. It's always been 'look what I can do mum!' I am extremely proud.”