Rush Green soldier branded ‘security risk’ by Met finally gets job

An ex-soldier who was unable to join the police after being branded a security risk is now celebrating after being offered a job by a “patriotic” Romford boss.

Mattheu O’Mahony, from Rush Green, has struggled to find work in the four years since he left the army.

The 37-year-old veteran of the Iraq, Bosnian and Kosovon conflicts was even turned down as a volunteer officer by the Met in March, after assessors said he had failed their security checks.

They refused to divulge their reasons.


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After starting his motorbike mechanics course at Barking and Dagenham College, Mattheu now wants to thank the Triumph motorcycle dealer willing to give him the chance no-one else would.

“I got quite disheartened after being turned down by the police,” said the former infantryman in the Royal Green Jackets, “but I’ve owned a motorbike for ten years and decided I wanted to do something I loved.”

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Last Monday Mattheu walked off the street into the Triumph garage, in London Road, and asked MD Peter Smith for a job - and he agreed.

“I had been applying for jobs for years but never seemed to get past the application stage,” said Mattheu. “People just don’t seem to want to employ an ex-soldier.

“Peter had a different attitude: he was happy to help me and seemed impressed that I was a former soldier. He came across as a patriot.”

Peter said: “Mattheu’s attitude is very, very positive. He was obviously passionate about doing this job and the fact he was in the army is a plus for me – they’re very disciplined.”

Peter has now agreed to sponsor Mattheu through his final year at college, which starts in September.

Part of Mattheu wages are paid for by charity The Poppy Factory, which helps ex-servicemen from combat zones find work.

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