Chloe Allen, 24, who serves with the Scots Guards, is the first female soldier in the British Army to serve on the frontline. She joined the army four years ago as Ben, but changed her name officially in August.

Allen will be the first woman who will fight in close hand combat with the enemy. The Guardsman who drives a Mastiff Army truck said: "It's a great honour to make history.

"I'm just looked at as a normal person," she told The Sun. She was worried about what other soldiers would think when she was discovered wearing women's clothes.

"I went down to muster parade in the morning for PT and it was just mainly banter, just having a laugh.

"The whole sort of worry that I had, I shouldn't have even worried. The entire battalion's been brilliant."

"If it hadn't happened I'd still be living a lie now. It was a blessing in disguise — the kick up the a**e I needed to get on and deal with it."

Allen's comrades then suggested she talk to her wife. "It was the first time I told anyone — it was a relief. It felt amazing to finally tell somebody and for her to be so accepting."

Allen, who is from Cumbria, said she began cross-dressing in her mother's clothes when she was aged eight years old.

As a Guardsman, she will continue to carry out ceremonial duties such as Trooping the Colour and will now be the first female infantry soldier since the Army began in 1660.

Former Prime Minister David Cameron announced In July that women will be able to serve in frontline combat roles. General Sir James Everard, Commander of the Field Army said: "I'm delighted to have our first woman serving in a Ground Close Combat unit.

"The British Army is proving itself as an inclusive organisation where everyone can thrive. Being the first of anything takes courage.

"I applaud Guardsman Chloe Allen for being a trendsetter and wish her every success."