An idea for a new role for the RNR...

Discussion in 'Royal Naval Reserve (RNR)' started by stumpy, Jan 8, 2007.

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  1. There seems to be a common thread running that the RNR lacks a clearly defined role. When I was in the RNR, before I went full time, the role was clear your own local MSF. That focus is lost and it does not seem if giving the RNR guns for ship protection is giving it a clear role (no offence meant).

    So how about this idea:

    Every ship is short of people when it comes to fire fighting, damage control etc. At action or emergency stations there is always a shortage. This will only get worse given lean manning and gapping. So why not train the RNR for this role? When a ship goes to war it could take onboard a trained team of RNR personnel, who have trained together, to form a spare floating damage control team, with fearnought men, BA control etc etc, the whole lot, even that most valuable commodity in such a situaiton: spare hands!

    A normal ship's company should be able to cope with normal peacetime fires etc, but war brings the increased risk of multiple damage and of course casualties and fatalities, and an RNR team could be perfect, you only pay for it when you need it.

    It would be fairly easy to implement, ie train at Phoenix and Raleigh at weekends when not used by regular RN (just need to pay for a few more instructors). You could spend time at sea to get familiar with the ships, and even have different units specialising in differnt types of Ships providing continuity. It would also provide a "cool" branch for recruitment purposes and it would be genuinly welcomed onboard in wartime. It would also be able to recuit ex-RN from any branch as all have some experience.

    What do you think?
  2. Another excuse for firemen to go on strike!!

    Seriously though, those that have been on board doing RF and DF have come back very positive, and the reports from the regulars seem very positive. Posing with guns, but without having to lie in a ditch, that sound like a role to me. And, why not do damage control aswell, Excellent could become the RNR centre of excellence!
  3. Noemis, that is a good idea to do both. Then the RNR bod is very employable onboard, and is usable both at sea and when alongside.

    By the way I was not trying to criticse the RNR as I have very fond memories of dodging a swinging otter in a nasty swell, and have always been impressed by the professionalism of the RNR. I also have always thought that the RNR is a greatly underappreciated organisation.
  4. Didn't think you were!! Appreciate anyone taking the time to help us develop!!
  5. And here comes the negative bit!

    Pheonix won't even lay on occasional weekend refresher courses for the RNR so the chances of getting them to to do it regular enough to make us as proficient as the RN is highly unlikely.

    The RN wont put ships out for us now so why do you think this would change?

    As much as i think it is a very good idea its never going to happen. They don't want to spend more money on us, they want to spend less. If they actually cared how useful the RNR were do you think they would be cutting the ships and bases etc left right and centre.

    If you look at even the smallest navies in the world they have vessels specifically for the training reservists. we havent had them for ten years and while they're destroying our navy like they seem intent on doing we'll be lucky if there is an RNR in ten years.

    I really really hope i'm wrong but i try to be a realist. Me, i intend to make hay while the sun shines. Make the most of what we do have and enjoy myself with the experiences the RNR offers me while i can.

    And now i've finished popping the parcetamol and supping the brndy i'm going to jump of a tall building.
  6. I'm forced to agree with trehorn. The best thing for us would be to have dedicated RNR ships, specifically for our training needs, but with this government it seems less and less likely.
  7. We had it before with the MCMV's and it cost the navy too much to run and maintain.

    The MOD is skint and looking to save money when they can.

    RNR personnal are cheaper than the RN equilivant, so more reservists will fill gaps. More call ups and mobilisations

    be prepared to be called up 4 - 5 times during your RNR career now.

    The new RNR 8)
  8. Funny realy how countries such as canada, france, australia etc etc have training ships specifically for reservist and the once great RN can't afford it.

    So funny it hurts.
  9. You're forgetting about the Bristol!!

    Just in case.... I am joking!!!
  10. Actually, thinking about it, what would you use? We don't have a any branches that allow us to have weapon systems on board, even if a handful of ex-regulars are from those branches. We have no engineers, so who would look after the oily bits?

    The only branch that would really benefit from having ships to go to sea on would be the seaman branch, but we are now GSS(R) and what do we do? We stand there with our weapons and look hard(ish) in CS95! We can do that on Bristol! It would just be an excuse for a cruise around the coast, a few officers to get their watchkeeping certificate, and the Navy losing vital money for proper ships.

    I could be persuaded that one of the River class ships could be used and operated by the RNR in it's current role, but even then it would require a regular crew too! I would enjoy the regular boarding practice, getting RIB qualified etc, but I can't see it. Perhaps VT could offer the MOD a lease on a ship of some sort just to train us, but I for one would prefer more to be spent on the training budget, so I can get all my adquals and go out there and do the job, if only for 2 weeks a year!

    Sorry guys, we just don't need our own ships anymore! Go to the WAFU forum index and see what they think of the RNR officer aircrew on there! This is not a flying club or a coastal cruising club, the meagre budget must be used for the front line first!
  11. Alas not a chance. I was down to do the Searider coxn's course having done the Gemini/MIB course in April. Two weeks before I was supposed to do it, got canned by Raleigh.

    Reason: "At present there is no requirement for GSSR personnel to be coxn qualified, so all RNR have been removed from coxn courses".

    Was a bit of a blow as I was relying on it to be my "other" week for bounty. Oh what to do...
  12. FlagWagger

    FlagWagger Book Reviewer

    Sorry to say, the RNR are not important enough to have their own guided missile destroyer.... such ships are reserved for important elements of the naval community, like the Sea Cadets! :lol:
  13. Anyway I would be reluctant to go back to ships solely for the RNR if we are talking about similar days to the old River Class days...!!

    It was clear to see that with our own ships the RNR went one way and the RN went another and when we were finally brought back to together it caused no end of shit..!!

    The MCM10 days were good in their time..but that era is long dead...move on and lets integrate with the RN not go our own seperate way and disintegrate!!
  14. I agree that this seems to be regularly stated, but it is not quite the case (not having a go at you Stumpy). I am going to be picky about this because otherwise the impression is that Fleet has set requirements for a reserve which it actually doesn't need.

    It is not that the RNR lacks a defined role, but that there is a sentiment that some branches and specialisations within the RNR do - something that must either be better explained (if there is a defined role) or re-defined by Fleet to more accurately reflect the needs of the Service.

    There are branches and specialisations for which the role is clearly defined and which are being used appropriately.

    There may well be questions over whether the RNR has a defined sea-going role, and that is certainly a tough one, but I don't think that it can be said that the Media Relations Specialisation, for example, lack a defined role, nor Submarine Operations, Comms(SM), and some of the more 'sneaky' branches.

    Anyone for a spot of port defence? :)
  15. It’s true at the minute the RNR lacks a clear role but it is SLOWLY changing. The reason for the change is the RN want to bring in the RNR to have a more active role roll to play and not to sit around with our fingers up our backsides till some one calls a war I'm glad for the change and don't forget we are all one Royal Navy
  16. The RNR could have a role if the RN was truly responsible for Coastal protection & maritime constabulary functions. It would require a mix of inshore and offshore patrol vessels (URNUs, Converted Trawlers, the current Customs & Excise Cutters, the current RMAS/ Civilian Marine Services vessels/tugs, the Range Safety and Aircew Training contract boats and Oil Rig Supply Boats etc); they would have to be crewed bya cadre of regulars (but could be maintained alongside by contractors) supplemented by RNR & URNU - 5th Watch manning or multiple (small) crews would have to be the norm.

    I'd base these vessels around the coast and they would patrol regularly in order to maintain marine security, provide a deterrent against drug/ people/ contraband smuggling or terrorist attack, Fishery & oil Rig protection and be responsible for the local coastal recognised maritime picture (which does not exist).

    It might even give the RN a public profile from which we could all benefit. It might even convince the politicians that the RN has a role to play in the current anti-terrorist focused conflicts.

    Unfortunately, it won't happen as its perceived to be too expensive (Although I suspect that it would soon be considered affordable if someone ever hits a container ship or ferry going into the Solent with a RIB full of explosives).

    A recent 1SL refused to countenance the idea of the RN carrying out Constabulary functions, arguing that it would interfere with the RNs core blue water role. However, if Defence of the Homeland is not a core role then I'm not sure what is. If my Solent scenario outlined above ever comes to fruition the subsequent Parliamentary enquiry will rightly wonder what the hell the RN was doing at the time.
  17. I don't disagree with your initial premise, smoothbore but I don't think it is fair to criticise 1SL for declining the invitation.

    I suspect it is a matter of focus and funding. The danger of the RN accepting the constabulary role as part of its' remit is that the politicos would, at the very best, phase funding in and, at the other extreme, expect the RN to take on the role with the assets currently available. A bit of a lose-lose scenario to be honest.

    In most other parts of the world coastal defence is the role of the Coast Guard. The role of the RN is protection of the Sea Lanes of Communication with an element of overlap obviously inherent in those 2 interfaces.

    A tricky one indeed BUT, there is a role for the RNR in there I agree in just the same way as the original intention for the TA was defence of the UK mainland releasing the Regular Army to take on the more expeditionary role - funny how things seem to turn themselves inside out given enough time eh?

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