Mine Warfare branch

Discussion in 'Royal Naval Reserve (RNR)' started by Kings_college_student, Mar 26, 2008.

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  1. Hello,

    Firstly I should introduce myself. I am a student at King's College London in the War Studies department. I have a particular interest in Naval History and the use of reserve forces.

    I am investigating the Mine Warfare department of the RNR. I am after some broad answers to some questions, or pointers as to where I can look for information. I am struggling to find resources which answer these questions:

    - When RNR personnel have been deployed in a MW role in recent history e.g. Op Telic, Op Corporate. Does anyone know? Going back say 25 years.

    - What are the skills and qualities required for mine warfare officers and ratings?

    - Does the RNR perform any MW activity alone or is it primarily done to supplement the full time RN?

    Of course, I do not expect anyone to reveal anything they should not, but I would be grateful for any assistance with my research.

    Upon completion I will post a link to my work.

    Many thanks

  2. Muppets, one pace forward, March!!!!
  3. FlagWagger

    FlagWagger Book Reviewer

    Well prior to the disbandment of 10 MCM in 1993, there was a dedicated squadron of RNR manned minesweepers; the book published in 2003 to mark the RNR centenerary covers some of the ground about how the RNR developed this role and how the role has changed since then. From a personal persepctive, I can remember an advertising campaign for the Reserves back in the late 1980s which stated that the RNR provided the majority (something like 80%) of the RN's minesweeping capability. In my time on RNR sweepers, I only took part in exercises - the sweepers of the late 80s had a very specific war-role that was not required during GW1.
  4. It might be worth a visit to HMS President, the RNR unit based in the city. There are a couple of regulars here who are members of that unit and may be prepared to get in touch, otherwise just give the unit a call and arrange an opportunity to interview.
  5. RNR Staff MCM personnel have often helped run and even command MCM HQs ashore and afloat during operations and exercises. For some historical background, read 'The MCMTA - Enforcer of ETOTITL' in the Dit Box of the MCDOA website.
  6. -The 80% figure was based on personnel, as each Division had several crews for their Sweepers.

    The RNR was never used operationally in an MW role while it manned it's own ships. This was a bit of a sore point with some, as for the Falklands the RN took up 5 large trawlers from trade and converted them into sweepers, which was exactly what the RNR Divisions in Bristol and Southn Wales had been doing with HMS St David & HMS Venturer which were Trawlers chartered to prove the principle. While personnel from both Divisions were employed to help train the RN crews, they were not permitted to participate in their deployment, even as volunteers and did this work simply as their annual training.

    At the time the RN hid behind the then Reserve Forces Act which apparently specified that there had to be a direct threat to the UK to mobilise reservists and also that selective mobilisation was not possible - we all would have had to be mobilised. This was changed subsequently.

    This created a widespread view that the RN did not want to use it's reserves at the time.
  7. Thanks to you all for your replies so far - any other contributions and thoughts would be gratefully recieved.

    Particularly, to the following question:

    - What are the skills and qualities required for mine warfare officers and ratings?

    Can someone tell me if MW is something that cannot be sustained for long periods, i.e. a unit deployed for say, more than 6 months, would that break the so called 'harmony' and cause innefectiveness? (see http://www.theyworkforyou.com/wrans/?id=2008-03-25a.193887.h&s=liam+fox#g193887.q0 for what I mean about harmony)

    Also, thanks to Naval_Gazer for the link to http://www.mcdoa.org.uk - this is a really excellent website which has helped alot.
  8. KCS
    Perhaps you could give some additional insight as your reasons for asking these questions and why RNR MW in particular?
  9. ...but despite this are refused membership of the MCDOA. End of drip.
  10. there where a number of RNR personnel deployed with MCM1 during Op Telic running the MCMTA and providing a force protection team for the RFA SIR Bedivere. 3 members of the team where seconded onto the Shallow Water Influence Minesweeping System Team (SWIMS) to go ahead of the main flotilla and clear the way for the humanitarian aid. Once the main task was complete MCM1/2 and the MCMTA was put ashore and the Force Protection team was retasked to provide upperdeck protection for the Bedivere as she brought back to the UK the Royal Marines.
  11. I can't reveal the details, but will put a link up on this thread when the work is published!
  12. Have you tried the National Archive ? Remember from my time at MoD that there were numerous documents about the RNR MCM role transferred there. Their catalogue is available on t'Internet.
  13. If you are looking in the records,will you please look at sweeping in the La Maddalena area of Sardinia for me and tell me what type of mines were swept in 1944.

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