New Commodore


Just read that the RNR is going to get a new Commodore and that he is in the RN (rather than the RNR) which is fantastic news.

I reckon that the fact that someone has been in the RN full time for twenty odd years and has demonstrated the capacity and competence to be promoted to high rank (as opposed to just having loads of time on their hands which is sometimes confused by the RNR for ability) is superb and good news for the RNR. The fact that he can commit himself to the job full time rather than juggle a civvie career cannot be a bad thing either.

However I wonder whether the senior officers in the RNR will have had their metaphorical noses put out of joint? I suspect that the answer is plenty since these political beasts or unit warriors must surely all be aspiring to be the commodore (the fact that most have little operational experience and have been promoted on time served will of course be looked over). The expression of jobs for the boys (with in excess of 80 commanders in the RNR, enough to man more than 6 AWFP teams) then this must be the case, especially since FORes put in his note that he was appointing the 'best man for the job' (couldn't have taken too much thinking about!) I am certain that the new RN commodore will only take a few moments to understand what we are about, let's just hope that he can stick about long enough to make a real difference.

So what? Welcome to the new commodore, whenever he starts, I am personally looking forward to the new broom and how it sweeps.

What does anybody else think?


War Hero
I think that there are 2 different RNRs - the real RNR with operationally focussed branches, and people who work bloody hard to keep it going. Then there is the "cold war RNR", full of fat passed over individuals who think the world ended in 1995 and do naff all to make a difference.

There are about 87 Cdrs at the moment, many of whom have no job. I personally would scrap RNR Officer promotion beyond SO2 - there is no need for it and I think it sends the wrong signals. Lets provide a pool of decent staff officers and good ratings, and if we want promotion, then go into the RN.

I'm all for never having another RNR Cdr, Capt again - lets make it regular leaders, for it will send a clear signal that we are integrating into the force.


I was beginning to think that I was the only one that may have had that view. Hear hear to you Mr Twiglet.

And while we are on the subject of grossly over promoted individuals have you not compared the RNR with the TA - same ethos, principles but a different uniform. In their world they become operational as a 2Lt and a Captain (=Lt) is considered to be an old sweat with plenty of ability and experience. We seem to have overinflated everything with instant promotion to subbie and [a relatively] small amount of time served to being a lieutenant.

I appreciate that there is historic reasons for midshipman being the lowest commission and that we should have a certain amount of equality with the RN but this whole rank thing is getting out of control. By my reckoning you could become a Lt on the basis of about 10 weeks training over 5 years (Raleigh, Dartmouth, Fleet-time, branch course x 2).

..and on the same note I wonder how many RNR commanders have got there on the basis evenings, weekends and say 32 weeks of courses over 16 years?

May be I am being unfair or am I missing something?
McGrew said:
he is in the RN (rather than the RNR)
Thank fcuk for that.
It strikes me that running the reserve branch of (one of) a country's armed forces while also holding down a civilian job can't be the easiest thing to do, and perhaps not the most sensible thing either. :whew:
You'd think it should be a full-time post, and now it is.

Totally agree with Twiglet about there being two RNRs - the "cold warriors" who still regard the RNR and RN as two separate services, and the rest who have more up-to-date "integrated" notions. That's not to say, obviously, that anyone who joined pre-95ish falls into the former category; it's a question of attitude.
A few bits for thought...

TA RLC, more Lt Colonels (Commanders) than 2nd Lts. Operationally you rarely deploy anyone major+ unless in specialist role or as a formed unit.

TA Infantry, sub units being run by 2nd Lts (midshipmen) or Officer cadets due to shortages in officers.

TA Yeomanry (Cavalry) an excess of Colonels (Captain).

The grass is not always greener in DPM. The pure difference is the numbers game. I did have the numbers but I believe it's more than 10:1 TA:RNR.

Personally I think that there's a bit of a middle ground to be had. There should be the ability to go right up to the 2* job (Commander Reserve Forces). However every Officer should have a justifiable job.

As I understand it from the manning briefing however you shall not be promoted past Lt unless there is a role for you to fill. This however does lead to a few problems as RNR postings do not rotate every two years, perhaps this should change? Dead mans boots isn't an effective career motivator.
Well I think it's wonderful and I'm one of the Cold War Warriors referred to earlier. But then I think it is wonderful for different reasons. For years now any one who was any one in the RNR has been afraid to rock the boat in case it affected promotion prospects. Most recently the creation of the Purple Reserve two star appointment potentially ensured that even the Commodore behaved himself. Now perhaps there will be a bit more boat rocking.
I supose this is part of the "Career Motivator" argument. Well I have a very good career thank you and it is not in the RNR. I have been happy to serve for a very long time now, never wanting promotion, only wanting to do something useful.Perhaps this is the start of a Reserve for people of the same mind as me
Problem is, for example, that over the years there have been a sucession of RNSOs in units who were appointed because they were the "best man for the job". In other words there was no other job they could do.
Following the logic of your argument we can assume that the RNR hitherto has had no cohesion or operational effectiveness, and with the appointment of an RN Commodore the service will undergo a step change and all the sad people who constantly gripe in here will have happy smiling faces in the furture. I wonder what DComMarRes has been doing for the past 4 years (its a full time RN Captain for those not in the know...).
grumbly said:
Following the logic of your argument we can assume that the RNR hitherto has had no cohesion or operational effectiveness, and with the appointment of an RN Commodore the service will undergo a step change and all the sad people who constantly gripe in here will have happy smiling faces in the furture. I wonder what DComMarRes has been doing for the past 4 years (its a full time RN Captain for those not in the know...).
Who's argument? Mine? Of course it has cohesion but you are correct in stating that the organisation has no operational effectivenes. It is individual reservists that do. I feel that is the big point. The Good Commodore has been apointed for his experience in Personnel. Not for his specialisation of WESM that has litttle or no relevence to the RNR
Brilliant news - and about time too!

Not sure I wholeheartedly support the earlier "not promote beyond SO2" argument and don't necessarily feel that there can never be a place for an RNR Commodore in future either but I can't help feeling that there is a time and a place and if an RN Cdre had been in post a couple of years ago much heartache, in-fighting and soul searching could have been avoided.

My opinion on our current Cdre (and it is only MY opinion) is that he has fallen well short of the mark as the "dynamic leader" that we required and, to be brutally frank, has been little more than ornament.

Roll on January and let's hope I don't look back on this euphoria with profound regret in the next few years.
Interestingly, I don't historically recall Reservists praising DNRes and his full-time staff as being particularly great, and they were full-time.

Surely it's not the hours that you put it; but what you put in to the hours.


War Hero
The problem with DNRES has historically been that its where the 3rd or 4th rate officers were sent to die quietly before they left the service. This has also been a problem with some PSI's and RNSO's in units - really nice people, but going outside and have other things to worry about.

I've said, and will continue to say that until we get service in CMR seen as a "promotion job", we will continue to get people who don't care as much as they should.
Well said PT. Many of those you mention are at the end of a career, rather than the start or middle and naturally have different objectives.
Much of the problem (with specific regard to DNRes and permanent staff) was that the RNR was a small part of the FOTR empire, which was itself a bit of a backwater, last job before retirement organisation.

Despite the controversy (and downright lying by HMG/Labour) over the Iraq War and Afghanistan, if they hadn't happened I wonder where the RNR would be now.

The fact that the Reserve Forces are back on the main stage is due the the fortunes of fate. Our past Commodores and Directors under the DNRes as part of FOTR banner were always going to face an uphill struggle. CMR as an Operational Commander could and should make a bigger bang and if the new CMR is going to be RN not RNR then that is something to rejoice about.

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