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HMS Queen Elizabeth's first Captain

...That's why until recently Lt Cdrs were promoted on seniority alone, prompting Pongoes to call them 'Spunyarn Majors' as soldiers had to pass a Captain-to-Major exam (in joined-up writing).

Slight correction Seaweed. As you probably know, only GL (General List) officers were promoted to Lt Cdr based on seniority alone. SL (Supplementary List) officers and SD (Special Duties) officers, comprising 50% of the RN officer corps, were selected for promotion to Lt Cdr based on their performance with no promotion possible past Cdr.


War Hero
Book Reviewer
OK Gazer, I ignored the SLs. I think Cdr for SDs came in in the 70s; SDs could also transfer to GL and go on and further up although relative age would not have helped.

Fleet Chief - I think RN wanted to avoid the 'Warrant' word. At the bottom men got 'Able' when they walked through the door (!) and cadets became midshipmen, a bit of levelling up there for presentational purposes. I still don't understand how officers could walk straight past the four and a half years it took to become a Lt if they had a degree in a totally irrelevant subject. Unfair on them really as others would expect the wearer of two stripes to know what he was doing (standfast some I knew!).
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