I'm in the Junior Navy - apparently!

Discussion in 'Royal Naval Reserve (RNR)' started by trehorn, Oct 31, 2012.

Welcome to the Navy Net aka Rum Ration

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial RN website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. The bosses daughter is on work experience in our office and when she found out that I was in the RNR she asked me what it was like to be in the "Junior Navy".

    I took the opportunity to tell her a bit about the RNR, even showing some articles on the good deeds of the RNR on operations and she came back with "well it's still the junior navy though isn'[t it - it's not the proper navy".

    Now I've been called allsorts of things by allsorts of people when they find out about my nautical tendancies but this hurt a little. I know the RNR isn't the "real" Navy and would never pretend otherwise but junior navy - please!
  2. That will teach you, pretending to be a real matelot to impress the totty and being rumbled:w00t:
    • Like Like x 1
  3. The real problem lies with the RNR itself, I served with many RNR personnel, most of them didn't have any problems with what they did, and were only too glad to be at sea and serving in the same capacity as their fellow mariners. Then we had a first aid RNR tutor at Haslar, whose standard quote was. "Really Not, Required". Seldom did I ever hear of any derisory remarks about RNR from full time mariners.
  4. The problem some of the public see the Reserve forces in the same way they see the Police special as not real police officers, but as cheaper paid part time gap fillers?

    The Special Constabulary is the United Kingdom's part-time police force. It is made up of volunteer members of the public who when on duty wear a uniform and have full police powers. There are around 15,000 Specials serving with police forces across the UK, with plans to increase that to around 20,000 in time for the London Olympics in 2012.

    It is only a perception, but people’s attitudes are had to change, so change the way you portray the RNR and do not come across as a sea cadet
  5. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    In my opinion: The problem with the perception of the Royal Navy Reserve, as opposed to the Royal Marines Reserve, is quite simple and easy to resolve. They've already cracked the perceived stigma of having a uniform that unfathomably differed from the regular service, but...

    Over the years the RNR has been under the cosh, struggling to justify it's continued existence and has rightly and cleverly made itself indispensable to the functioning of the Royal Navy by specialising in "niche" trades which are unique to the RNR, but largely only in a shore support role.

    Right up to the SDSR, many thought it may well be up for the chop, but the reverse happened - the ministers see it as a cheap alternative to a retained service but don't appreciate it is not like the RMR or TA.

    For starters they very, very rarely go to sea as there are very few transferable seagoing trades and those there are, take several years to reach trained status so they have a huge retention problem and people are leaving faster than we can recruit.

    Before anyone claims "We can't take them to sea until they are trained" look no further than the 14 P2000's scattered around the country for the exclusive use of over 700 undergraduates, manned with over 100 full time RN personnel at a cost in excess of £5M a year. From that 700 undergraduates we expect to recruit less than 5% into the RN or RNR.

    Remind me again how the URNU escaped the SDSR?
    • Like Like x 1
  6. Just had to ask - when you put the clocks back in your house at the weekend, did you accidentally put the year back too? :laughing3:
    • Like Like x 1
  7. N-S, the most interesting thing I found about the ethos of the URNU (of which we have close links as we are affiliated to one of the craft) is that it is specifically NOT a recruiting tool for the RN. Instead, it supposedly develops the leaders of tomorrow using a practical nautical theme, and also reminds our young up-and-comers of the importance of a strong Navy to an island nation.

    Best one I ever heard on the topic was an ex-student (they all are, eventually) who proudly boasted they were a snotty, until it was politely pointed out that they are all snottys so that was a basic entry level, not an achievement.
  8. Possibly the curse of cut and paste in haste HaHa
  9. I always found from personal experience that one of the problem with the RNR was the RN.
    Ex regulars who instructed in the units seemed to be( in the main) there, for their sake, and not the RNR bods.
    In the unit I served in the blokes were keen, and stand-fast the occasional twat, eager to learn anything you gave them.
    I taught Seamanship and DC at Forward, when it was still in Broad street, during my spell as a PSI.
    I was an anachronism due to my SQ at that time.
    I was theoretically capable (being a light heavy boxer) to batter anyone who did not listen and fix them up afterwards as I was an MA.
    Happy days.
    • Like Like x 1
  10. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    I appreciate what the ethos of the URNU is all about as I was Coxswain (2i/c) at Oxford URNU for a few years, thoroughly enjoyed it.

    But...I find it very hard to justify the resources and cost to the taxpayer of a public relations exercise which is basically a university society of no realistic or demonstrable practical purpose.

    I'd be interested to hear how many civilian "movers and shakers" in Government, the Treasury or Defence with former URNU experience have 'delivered the goods' in return.

    Hmmn, let me guess...erm, none.
    • Like Like x 1
  11. My bold - it provides 14 Commands to Lts/Lt Cdrs at very little cost, allows for the development of some of our best Junior Officers, is a lot of fun and 'resets' them after some fairly hefty jobs for 6 years.

    I know that might not be the answer you are looking for, but there are some very real dangers in providing people with their first Command experience in a T23 or T45.
  12. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    Agreed, but why take undergraduates with a 95% probability of "zero return" to sea in preference to those that joined the RNR but don't go to sea?

    ...and another thing.

    The RNR are part of the UK's military coastal defence organisation and can act as an aid to a civilian power in the event of national disaster or terrorist activity, right? Wrong.

    When was the RNR last involved in disaster relief planning with the local authorities or when did they last exercise with emergency services?

    What do they do again?
  13. As I always tell the guys and gals in our unit - every course/unit etc has a c*nt, the important thing is making sure it isn't you. Likewise if you don't know who the c*nt is then it probably is you :thumbleft:
    • Like Like x 2
  14. How old is she, Trehorn? She might not be terribly well-informed, you know. I suspect that she is about 15 - if you ask the average 15 year old girl about the Navy, let alone the RNR, most of them actually know very little and what they do know is probably third-hand because they once knew a girl who had a friend who knew a bloke in the Navy etc.
  15. Are come on Soleil, the man has had his pride and ass kicked by the bosses daughter, so don’t big him up and make him feel better, just kick him whilst he is down, and let him suffer like a man or don’t the RNR do that either?:pirate::pirate::toothy8::toothy8:
    • Like Like x 1
  16. Could the URNU's benefit from more from being more of an active recruiting tool though? The UOTC follow a military syllabus which allows a more seamless transfer into the TA; I think they also have the option of being awarded the military or civilian equivalent qualification. The way they are structured also allows their final years to complete TA modules which they can take forward. The UAS follow a flying skills syllabus which gives them recorded, practical flying experience which they can then can also take forward; for example the Q101 form for AIB asks for any flying experience in detail. However- what do you get from the URNU in terms of practical, military qualifications? Errrr..... CMI Level 5 is available but again the UOTC are able to claim the relative military qualification. Could it be possible for the URNU do to this? Is there even a Naval equivalent to CMI?

    The URNU follow the RYA Yachtmaster syllabus that students are able to qualify in but it is not compulsory and the packs are provided at your own expensive (heavily subsidised). Why not make it compulsory? We do have 'URNU task books' to fill out but what good are these to a RNR unit? Would they care if I took my task book along to a joining interview even? But then CO's are faced with the contradiction of not appearing to be a recruiting tool whilst providing students with a fulfilling experience. What if the RYA Yachtmaster was compulsory and you failed? 'Don't let the door hit you on the way out fella' or 'never mind shipmate just crack on as usual'. But then they don’t want to scare people away by acting as if the URNU is another part of university- where you have lectures and exams. The URNU is seen as an escape from that. Part of me says fair enough but then part of me well actually so ******* what. You get paid, you wear the uniform, you bloody well do something useful whilst part of the unit. You get so many privileges, so much time and effort spent on you the least you can is gain something for YOURSELF out of 2-3 years of being in the URNU. The counter argument is- ‘just because I’m in the URNU doesn’t mean I want to have a career in the maritime/nautical field. But what about those that do? Does it matter if it’s in the RN, RNR, RFA, civilian shipping companies etc? And if you don’t go into a maritime organization afterwards? Then you have just gained a subsidised qualification that can be used for your own personal pleasure.

    I can’t speak for other units but mine was pretty good at getting people to sea- dates were advertised in advanced and the Coxswain was pretty clued up on balancing people on how much they had done throughout the year to make it fair for everyone.

    Would it be possible for the URNUs and RNR units to share hulls? Don’t know, I’m not qualified to say so. I guess it would be hell of a commitment required from the URNU COs and maybe remove them completely from the units. But are they being employed as Captain HMS... or OiC... URNU? I understand the dual command part but with extra commitment would this still be possible? I am not saying this means the RNR should not be going to sea in P2000! 2 Captains per hull? RNR trained COs?

    I don't profess to be completely clued up on the workings of either to UOTC or UAS so I hold my hands up if I have got anything wrong. For what it is worth I think the university military units are fantastic. I have done things with them that most other students societies could not offer- and free to boot. We consistently raise large amounts of money for local and military charities over the year and take part in the annual November ceremonies. I had a brilliant time and the skills and leadership experience I gained have really helped me.

    I have heard of countless examples or students getting up people’s noses by acting like cocks in uniform by thinking they are more than they are. But when you tell students they are honourary junior officers and give them the privileges that go along with that (staying in the wardroom, midshipman pay, officer uniform etc) you are bound to get the odd twat who goes too far. Most people I knew where incredibly humble of their ‘status’ and would never dream of doing some of the things I heard about. A shame when it happens but there you go.

    I have just written down all this as it came into my head. Whilst I like the idea of URNU to RNR being made more of a seamless option would the RNR even want this? Could it even be done?

    Does the URNU have to accept that in light of the SDSR and the general economy that they HAVE to be more of a recruiting tool than they are and more ‘militaristic’ in their approach to students? Or do we say well for a few million we get to teach undergraduates about the need for and about the Navy, fly the white ensign where big ships can’t normally go and provide Lieutenants with a command position before they go onto PWO training?
    • Like Like x 2
  17. This is the bosses little ray of sunshine, fall out with her and it could be the big issue, slip her one and you could be 2i/c, your choice
    • Like Like x 2
  18. The other "benefit" offered to the RN by the URNU (and please don't challenge me on the cost/value for money equation because it doesn't stack up) is the ability to give young (high potential) officers a "command" they would otherwise not be able to have as part of the grooming for greater things process.

    Sorry - I posted before reading Alfred the Great's response (which makes my contribution somewhat redundant.
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2012
  19. Sharkey
    so what you saying is, Trehorn got a kicking from his bosses daughter, and now
    I am going to get it from the bosses little ray of sunshine? Oh happy days and
    joy, and slip her what? is she bribable?

  20. Jimmy Savile?
    • Like Like x 1

Share This Page