SOLDIERS from the hit television show Bad Lads Army were in Corsham over the weekend to put pupils through their paces at Box Highlands summer fete.

The special guests were invited along to help the school's Friends group raise money, as well as ensuring an entertaining 1950s style bootcamp experience.

Joe Murray, who lives in Rudloe and whose daughters attend the school, stars as a corporal in the ITV show, which will run for its fourth season, starting next week.

He said: "The new series is called Bad Lads Army Extreme and viewers can expect it to be extreme by name and extreme by nature.

"All I can tell you at this point in time is that the bad lads suffered like they have never suffered before and we all enjoyed making them suffer."

As well as Mr Murray, there were four other soldiers from the series on hand to start races and organise special command tasks for the youngsters.

Sergeant Tim Weston, Corporal Jim Bush, Corporal Jack Newton and Sergeant Jack Godwin, all from the popular show, travelled from up and down the country to be there on the day.

Mr Murray said: "We finished filming the show last Saturday in Dorset and five of us from the programme came down to help them raise money and obviously because I have family connections there anyway.

"It was a great day, although the turnout wasn't as good as we hoped it would have been, and especially after the other corporals and sergeants came from all over the country to be there.

"I think it was due to the World Cup that we didn't get as big a turnout as we had hoped."

Mr Murray was a sergeant major in the Army until four years ago and travelled extensively during his career.

He got involved in the television programme after simply going up for a casting audition and landing the part. He said: "I have done all the series of Bad Lads Army from when it started and I'm really looking forward to the new episodes starting next Tuesday."

Mr Murray, who lives in Clift Close with his wife Penny and three daughters, said he got involved with the school fete because his wife is joint chair of The Friends of Box Highlands and his daughters Olivia and Charlotte are pupils there.

He said: "My daughters had a great time and were really pleased that I came down to the school.

"I think a lot of the mothers were very pleased to see us, too."

Children who went to the fete were awarded medals by the television stars for taking part in a number of tasks.

Mr Murray said: "There was a tug-of-war between the Bad Lads men and firemen from the RAF base at Basil Hill, which of course we won. We were then taken on by kids from the school and they beat us hands down."

The total raised has not yet been finalised.