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Branches

Deckhead_Inspector said:
So MW is now like Sub-Ops. they have some people doing the job who have never been in boats but have learned to understand them.
You have missed the point. MW officers will complete up to 5 years of ORT in an MCMV. This is supplemented by regular Sea weekends in MCMV's. No-one can effectively work in an MWBS without prior sea experience in an MCMV.
 
Aha! I was wondering when the glorious WUs would get mentioned. The mighty Air Branch can be seen as being a model for the rest of the MarRes, as it seems to be the only branch that fulfills 2SL's vision of the RNR being "frontline gap fillers" - at any one time lots of us are in squadrons around the Fleet - personally I think we should have a little "A" in the curl, just like the good old days....
 
Reservist-Monkey said:
All this talk of forum titles has got me thinking.

What is the feeling on the ground about the current list of specialisations. A few thoughts from Monkey.

1) Command Support - how much do we really need this? I can see a use for the ratings but haven't the days of NCAGS officers sitting in Dubai reaching its end.

As 'the' current "NCAGS officer sitting in Dubai" I thought I ought to make a few points of my own.

1. I and my team don't do an awful lot of sitting around - we work a 6 day week (7 days more often than we care to mention) working 12 hour days or longer.
2. We don't do it just to fill the time between sessions on the beach, we do it because there is a lot of serious work to do and, I am very pleased to add, our efforts are recognised by the Commands we support, CINCFLEET, COMUSNAVCENT, UKMCC Bahrain, CTF58 off Iraq, CTF150 off the Horn of Africa, CTF152 in the Central Gulf and so on.
3. Far from 'reaching an end' the role continues to expand as we provide REAL, VALUABLE and GRATEFULLY received information and practical support to the Merchant Navy including major shipping companies, organisations such as the Chamber of Shipping, Intertanko etc as well as Masters of merchant vessels.
4. It is regrettable that the one group in the Navy on whom we felt we could count for total support (and who, incidentally, should be pleased that the RNR is able to contribute to RN current ops) - ie the RNR itself - has so many 'doubters' among their ranks who are only too keen to make derogatory comments without even attempting to uncover the facts.
5. Thankfully I am pleased to say we also have supporters in the RNR and my thanks go to those who have posted comments endorsing what we are doing out here.
6. Don't get me wrong, we are not hard done by. We have working weeks that would make a lot of people in the UK cringe BUT - the weather is fabulous, the facilities are great, Dubai is a wonderful place to be and the job itself is hugely rewarding but the Navy does not and never has been front of the queue to deploy people somewhere for their own exclusive enjoyment. They expect a payback and they get that from UKMTO Dubai.

So, Reservist-Monkey - pick Dubai for your next holiday and while you are here pop along to see us - you will be most welcome to find out first hand what we do and maybe THEN you could consider yourself qualified to climb up on your soapbox.

Did that all come across as 'Mr Angry from Dubai'? - I do hope so!
 
I agree wholeheartedly that the GSSR SPO teams need a "well thought out" training programme, not to mention proper kitting for the job.

Having recently come into the branch myself as a re-cat with quite a lot of years experience, operationally and otherwise i thought the following would be relevant:

Firstly the teams should be sent on regular CQB training weekends. I'm not talking about Tipner Range as that is not the correct environment. I'm talking about ships, both merchant and RN, simulators and 'Killing House' type training areas. I realise that a dedicated CQB range exists only at RM Poole, but the guys there from MCT are the best in the business at doing maritime CT, so why not send a few select senior SPO Managers down there to see how they do things and maybe even jack up some training for teams down there with the CQB instructors. I realise that some people will think this is going a bit far, but as we're going to be tasked with protecting multi-million pound ships, wouldn't it be worth investing in training us properly so that it becomes second nature, practiced to a fine art? Knowing a lot of the guys who are on the teams they will embrace the job in a professional manner, so why not back that up with the tools for the job? Thoughts anyone?

Also, while i'm on the subject, it would be prudent IMHO to look at how we're kitting the teams. There are many practical suggestions that could be made with regard to this and as this is an open forum i'll refrain from listing my personal suggestions on this, but it would be an idea for the WO's to gain the opinions of the guys as to what may be needed to do the job to the best of our ability. There are a lot of people with the knowledge and experience to know what works and what doesn't so why not have a 'suggestion box' system that could be put forward and looked at by the branch seniors. The SPO budget isn't going to be the biggest i'm sure but there are a lot of small things that would make the job more viable. Again any thoughts from the teams?
 
Admission to the Air Branch is entirely ex RN. This is acceptable for aircrew and should remain so. However, the branch now has a much wider remit than when it was originally formed and includes many personel in ground roles. How would it be if you had to be a former submariner to be in submarine ops, MCD to be in MW, a pusser to be a loggie etc. I don't think we would have too much of an RNR if this was the case.
I do find it rather odd that if some one off the street had ambitions to go to sea in a CVH as an Air Ops Officer they would be able to do this as a member of the RAuxAF, but not the RNR.

GCYZ I have PM'd you.
 
DI... your point about aircrew actually applies to most (admitedly not all) trades in the Air Branchs (Engineer, Met & Oceanography, ATC). The specialist skills required that even a Civvie working in the equivalent area might not have?

You have a good point about Ops... however there is no trade of "Air Ops Officer", and I suggest the background knowledge expected when performing that role predicates past-experience rather than a "green recruit"... I'm not saying it's impossible, but the Air Branch is structured foir majority of its members. Implementing "green recruitment" would necessitate a new training structure, organisation and ethos that, frankly, is unlikely to be supported by Functional Employers... to whom the Air Branch already has a hard enough job justifying ex-regulars who need little/no training.
I don't think we would have too much of an RNR if this was the case
Admittedly, the Air Branch is under-manned compared to other RNR lists, but its trained-strength is, I believe, streets ahead
 
Then again the civvy working in the equivalent area might be over qualified!
Of course the Air Branche's trained strength is streets ahead, by definition it is 100%. But the skills fade is awful.
The "Air Ops Officer" is a fairly new concept in the RAF as well. Brought in to adress a shortfall of aircrew. The ispec for the RAuxAF course does not include too much that a civvy deeply involved in aviation would not already know.
 
When will the uniformed branch of the Fleet Air Arm Officers Association (The RNR Air Branch) come in to line with the rest of the RNR on that one?



Rather than the RNR Air Branch coming in line with the RNR, why not bring the RNR in line with the ethos behind the Air Branch?

The RNR is an unattractive option for many ex-service people because there are only very limited options for them to join. Why not follow the Air Branch pattern and have a split between the RNR which fills in the gaps not catered for by the RN (GSSR, NCAGS, CS4I etc) and require training; and an RNR (possibly under a different name) of trained ex-regulars which would allow ex-service people to carry on doing what they have been doing for the last few years and be drafted as individuals by the existing RN system. Isn’t that a closer fit to what the RN needs?

I’d also be very interested in any ideas that people might have on whether the current branches are enough, or whether there is something else out there which the RNR should be doing?

PS. Well hasn’t this been a big week for Le Jaq? Firstly there’s the news from the Standards Board which has put me in a position where I actually have to agree (through gritted teeth) with Ken Livingstone and now here I am saying something in support of the FAA. I’m turning into some kind of liberal!
 
le_jaq said:
The RNR is an unattractive option for many ex-service people because there are only very limited options for them to join. Why not follow the Air Branch pattern and have a split between the RNR which fills in the gaps not catered for by the RN (GSSR, NCAGS, CS4I etc) and require training; and an RNR (possibly under a different name) of trained ex-regulars which would allow ex-service people to carry on doing what they have been doing for the last few years and be drafted as individuals by the existing RN system. Isn’t that a closer fit to what the RN needs?
You mean a bit like FTRS for ex-regulars (who incidentally don't have to join the RNR) which has been going for some years?
 
An interesting string of posts with plenty of tribal rivalry and splean venting from muppets, sun dodgers and FUs.

However, what is the role of the RNR? Is it to provide the skills the RN needs or is it to find billets for the skills it (the RNR) has? Right now a lot of the Branches - sorry, Specialisations & Sub-Specialisations - merely appear to be acting as Temp Agencies providing officers and ratings who are currently appropriately trained to fill exercise and operational billets. However, there is no realistic long term plan to grow this expertise from New Entry.

With dumbed down training to TPS and OPS at both officer and rating level ("in future years no reservist will go to sea" is the quote from our late and unlamented RN training master), few will have had the opportunity to progress to the level our RN masters require in future years.

In this scenario it will be the lot of the ex-Regular - lets call them the Regular or Fleet Reserve - to provide back up until skill fade leads to them be replaced in their turn.
 
"in future years no reservist will go to sea" is the quote from our late and unlamented RN training master

I assume this was from a former SOTR who was not noted for being accurate in his pronouncements.

There is one branch that hasn't been mentioned, which has a glorious sea-going future in the RFAs of the missile screen - apart from when it's backfilling 22 Field Hospital, of course.
 
Feel the need for a bit of tribalism again.

Is it true that on a recent AWNIS week end every one was in the transit accom at Uxbridge? I don't know for sure but I think it is awful that the lads and lassies of the branch could not slag off their officers because they were sleeping with them! I also heard a rumour that they were so short off training ideas that they all went for a run in the morning. (The sort without beer!)

If the accom dit is true, what do you expect? Of course there was no Officers accom available, It was Battle of Britain Week end. PPPPPPP!
 

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