Passed out of Raleigh AMA

mick1199

Lantern Swinger
I know you see these kinds of posts every now and again but I figured I’d do my own so ask away! Could also do a week by week breakdown of training if anyone wants it since obviously things have been different during COVID.
 

mick1199

Lantern Swinger
Hi there,
Well done and congrats! Share your experience with us. When do you start the Phase 2? Where is it?
Obviously I went through phase 1 during COVID so there were some restrictions in regards to what we could go in terms of the programme. Largely it’s wasn’t changed, however we did miss out on doing proper IMF as in rope climbs and four corners and instead just did running and body weight circuits out on the astro turf. Similarly, we spent our first four weeks in Ganges block as a kind of isolation and we were tested weekly. Normally you’d go straight into your divisional block and your seniors would be able to help you out and give you some tips throughout training. We didn’t have that.

Phase 1 itself isn’t all that difficult, physically. Sure it’s hard, but if you think it’s going to be impossible and there’s things you won’t be able to do, then don’t. Everything is manageable and doable, even the more challenging evolutions like Dartmoor. We had a few people who were backclassed or discharged within the first few weeks, mainly for picking up injuries on easy things like the RNFA on day 2, which is just your first running test, or for failing it. What you’ll find is most people who get training extended or kicked out after that are generally just mongs who keep on racking up warnings and can’t keep their noses clean. Even some embarrassingly chunky and unfit people managed the likes of the stretcher run and Dartmoor and still passed out, so whilst fitness isn’t to be sniffed at you don’t need to be an athlete. Most of it is mental anyway and you will find that you can push yourself much further than you realised you could.

The mental side of training I found was much harder than a lot of the physical challenges and the general regime of constantly being on your feet and feeling knackered. This made everything a lot more difficult to deal with. I really struggled with home sickness, mainly missing my girlfriend, throughout the entire time I was there and my mood reflected that so I was pretty much miserable all of the time. That was something that I thought would be difficult to deal with but I was surprised at how hard it hit me. Everyone had their low points and other lads talked about leaving but no one ever did in my division. Some people just can’t get their head round the fact that phase 1 is just a massive game and that it’s ‘Not the real Navy’ as you’ll be told time and time again. I’ll be honest I nearly PVRd several times and I’m still coming to terms with being away from my loved ones, but that’s just the life of the Navy. Other people coped with it much better and I can definitely see why the Navy is a single man’s game, though I wouldn’t change anything.

The first few weeks at Raleigh are the worst by far. Week 1 is just admin, brief, admin, brief etc. You’ll hate it and the shock of capture really hits some people hard, it did with me and I cried myself to sleep practically ever night. I certainly wasn’t the only one either. You also have the RNFA on day 2 and the swim test on day 5. Those who fail get a second chance, in the case of the swimming test rehash it’s immediately afterwards and if you fail again you’ll be placed on swimming remedials. One lad in our division passed it after about eight tries and another ended up being put into Conqueror division until he passed, which he did but was obviously training extended and placed in a different division. As for the RNFA it doesn't matter how bad your time is, if it’s within your age groups time ignore it. You’ll get much much fitter by week 5. By the weekend of week 1 you start to acclimatise and get into a routine.

Week 2 you’ll start to get introduced to phys, IMF and drill which aren’t too bad. The drill instructors are brilliant and always have a laugh so they make what could be a very boring lesson into a fun one. Week 3 was Piers Cellars for us and was awful. I’ve never been so cold in my entire laugh, and that’s not an exaggeration. The weather was horrendous and the harbour water nearly sent a few lads into cold water shock. You have your first kit muster in week 4 which most people will pass first time, the common theme between those who failed was sheer laziness. Week 5 is your RNFT, for reference I got 12:46 on the RNFA in day 2 which is atrocious and I managed 10:13 on the RNFT, week 5. Still not a brilliant time for a 21 year old but it goes to show just how much fitter you’ll get even in five weeks. You’ll also do Jupiter Point in week 5, so messing around on boats.

Week 6 was MTU, which used to be in week 3 but apparently the pass rates have improved as you’re still in the militarisation stage in week 3. The staff apparently didn’t get that memo. This is the week where you’ll learn how to handle, strip and fire a rifle safely. Week 7 is Dartmoor, brutal and a slog but easily doable, just pack your bergen sensibly and compact and make sure your straps are secure and comfortable otherwise they’ll shred your shoulders. We also started learning arms drill at the beginning of that week and had our lead guard selection. It was comical how bitter the other class were that my class won.

Week 8 is another kit muster and CBRNDC school or Triumph Squadron. First aid, gas training, firefighting and Havoc. This week is incredibly laid back and pretty fun. Havoc was easily most people’s highlight of training. We didn’t get gassed because of something to do with faulty CS pellets. Also my class got to do Havoc but the other class didn’t as COVID had sent a few staff home so they did Chaos, which is like the soft play version of Havoc. Again, they clearly weren’t bitter.

Week 9 is a hang out. We did the assault course because we had COVID jabs in week 10 when you’d normally do it, which puts you on ‘light duties’ for 48 hours although we still did phys and drill. We also did the stretcher run which is easily the hardest physical challenge in all of training and rounded off the week with Audacious Defender. Week 10 is just drill, brief, drill, brief then pass out. You’ll spend time rehearsing your arms drill and passing out parade.

Next for me is Sultan for phase 2, I’m an MESM so that’s 32 weeks there and I’m starting there this Sunday.

Hope this helps! Any more questions fire away.
 
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Taztiff

War Hero
Obviously I went through phase 1 during COVID so there were some restrictions in regards to what we could go in terms of the programme. Largely it’s wasn’t changed, however we did miss out on doing proper IMF as in rope climbs and four corners and instead just did running and body weight circuits out on the astro turf. Similarly, we spent our first four weeks in Ganges block as a kind of isolation and we were tested weekly. Normally you’d go straight into your divisional block and your seniors would be able to help you out and give you some tips throughout training. We didn’t have that.

Phase 1 itself isn’t all that difficult, physically. Sure it’s hard, but if you think it’s going to be impossible and there’s things you won’t be able to do, then don’t. Everything is manageable and doable, even the more challenging evolutions like Dartmoor. We had a few people who were backclassed or discharged within the first few weeks, mainly for picking up injuries on easy things like the RNFA on day 2, which is just your first running test, or for failing it. What you’ll find is most people who get training extended or kicked out after that are generally just mongs who keep on racking up warnings and can’t keep their noses clean. Even some embarrassingly chunky and unfit people managed the likes of the stretcher run and Dartmoor and still passed out, so whilst fitness isn’t to be sniffed at you don’t need to be an athlete. Most of it is mental anyway and you will find that you can push yourself much further than you realised you could.

The mental side of training I found was much harder than a lot of the physical challenges and the general regime of constantly being on your feet and feeling knackered. This made everything a lot more difficult to deal with. I really struggled with home sickness, mainly missing my girlfriend, throughout the entire time I was there and my mood reflected that so I was pretty much miserable all of the time. That was something that I thought would be difficult to deal with but I was surprised at how hard it hit me. Everyone had their low points and other lads talked about leaving but no one ever did in my division. Some people just can’t get their head round the fact that phase 1 is just a massive game and that it’s ‘Not the real Navy’ as you’ll be told time and time again. I’ll be honest I nearly PVRd several times and I’m still coming to terms with being away from my loved ones, but that’s just the life of the Navy. Other people coped with it much better and I can definitely see why the Navy is a single man’s game, though I wouldn’t change anything.

The first few weeks at Raleigh are the worst by far. Week 1 is just admin, brief, admin, brief etc. You’ll hate it and the shock of capture really hits some people hard, it did with me and I cried myself to sleep practically ever night. I certainly wasn’t the only one either. You also have the RNFA on day 2 and the swim test on day 5. Those who fail get a second chance, in the case of the swimming test rehash it’s immediately afterwards and if you fail again you’ll be placed on swimming remedials. One lad in our division passed it after about eight tries and another ended up being put into Conqueror division until he passed, which he did but was obviously training extended and placed in a different division. As for the RNFA it doesn't matter how bad your time is, if it’s within your age groups time ignore it. You’ll get much much fitter by week 5. By the weekend of week 1 you start to acclimatise and get into a routine.

Week 2 you’ll start to get introduced to phys, IMF and drill which aren’t too bad. The drill instructors are brilliant and always have a laugh so they make what could be a very boring lesson into a fun one. Week 3 was Piers Cellars for us and was awful. I’ve never been so cold in my entire laugh, and that’s not an exaggeration. The weather was horrendous and the harbour water nearly sent a few lads into cold water shock. You have your first kit muster in week 4 which most people will pass first time, the common theme between those who failed was sheer laziness. Week 5 is your RNFT, for reference I got 12:46 on the RNFA in day 2 which is atrocious and I managed 10:13 on the RNFT, week 5. Still not a brilliant time for a 21 year old but it goes to show just how much fitter you’ll get even in five weeks. You’ll also do Jupiter Point in week 5, so messing around on boats.

Week 6 was MTU, which used to be in week 3 but apparently the pass rates have improved as you’re still in the militarisation stage in week 3. The staff apparently didn’t get that memo. This is the week where you’ll learn how to handle, strip and fire a rifle safely. Week 7 is Dartmoor, brutal and a slog but easily doable, just pack your bergen sensibly and compact and make sure your straps are secure and comfortable otherwise they’ll shred your shoulders. We also started learning arms drill at the beginning of that week and had our lead guard selection. It was comical how bitter the other class were that my class won.

Week 8 is another kit muster and CBRNDC school or Triumph Squadron. First aid, gas training, firefighting and Havoc. This week is incredibly laid back and pretty fun. Havoc was easily most people’s highlight of training. We didn’t get gassed because of something to do with faulty CS pellets. Also my class got to do Havoc but the other class didn’t as COVID had sent a few staff home so they did Chaos, which is like the soft play version of Havoc. Again, they clearly weren’t bitter.

Week 9 is a hang out. We did the assault course because we had COVID jabs in week 10 when you’d normally do it, which puts you on ‘light duties’ for 48 hours although we still did phys and drill. We also did the stretcher run which is easily the hardest physical challenge in all of training and rounded off the week with Audacious Defender. Week 10 is just drill, brief, drill, brief then pass out. You’ll spend time rehearsing your arms drill and passing out parade.

Next for me is Sultan for phase 2, I’m an MESM so that’s 32 weeks there and I’m starting there this Sunday.

Hope this helps! Any more questions fire away.
Very good write up young man. That is the best precis of Raleigh New Entry I have read for a while. And honest.
Nice one for taking the time.
BZ

Did notice one word which was probably the wrong one (spell check?) but not worth a rescrub!!
 

janner

MIA
Book Reviewer
Well done @mick1199 just a suggestion, it might be of interest to those waiting to join for you to include, without giving personal information away, what you were doing up to the time of joining. ie. job, home life outside interests,
 

Core

Midshipman
Nice write up. Well done.
Do you get a COVID jab if you haven't had one before Raleigh?
So basically people are discharged for warnings rather than medical/fitness issues and also some people leave voluntarily in the first few days??
 

mick1199

Lantern Swinger
Well done @mick1199 just a suggestion, it might be of interest to those waiting to join for you to include, without giving personal information away, what you were doing up to the time of joining. ie. job, home life outside interests,
Cheers @janner good shout. My application process took about 9 months in total. I worked in retail beforehand as a supervisor but left a few months after I applied. Probably against my better judgement but as per the AFCO, they dangled the carrot in that I might have a start date by early into the new year. Obviously that didn’t happen and it was a few months until I even got my start date.

There’s not all that much to add really. I posted a few times before I actually started training about my dealings with Capita which slowed my application down. Don’t really have any mad hobbies or interests, there was lads in my division who were into rock climbing, kayaking, some lads fixed bikes or had project cars. Some had prior experience in engineering, which was their chosen role, and had been electricians or mechanics. Others had been in cadets or went to military prep colleges. Word for the wise for people going into phase 1, if you were in the cadets keep it to yourself. There’s nothing wrong with people knowing or helping people out with what you already do, but don’t go banging on about it constantly. it became a running joke about how often some lads mentioned the cadets to the point where it was like they’d forgot they’d actually joined the proper military and it rubbed a lot of people the wrong way.

I was pretty typical of most of the lads in phase 1 as well, around 20 years old, living with parents, hadn’t been away from home much. Lots of lads and lasses weren’t in relationships, which seems pretty typical of Raleigh. Those of us who were found it a bit crap only having 30mins of phone time a night to talk to the other half, although our DIs were particularly strict on phone usage.

Prior to joining I did a fair bit of running and that was pretty much it fitness wise. I let myself go in the few months before I actually started and definitely felt it during phys more than some other people. That said I still managed, better than others in some cases. It’s more about effort than anything else. It doesn’t matter if you’re a lard arse and constantly lagging, if you’re hanging out and still reasonably keeping up with the class you’ll be good. Everyone gets a beasting or a bollocking at some point, just don’t take it to heart.
 

mick1199

Lantern Swinger
Nice write up. Well done.
Do you get a COVID jab if you haven't had one before Raleigh?
So basically people are discharged for warnings rather than medical/fitness issues and also some people leave voluntarily in the first few days??
If you’re 18+ and haven’t had ANY jabs (they turned away anyone under 18 and anyone who’d already had their first jab) you should get a jab. We got ours in week 10 and it was Moderna.

In our division very few got discharged for fitness or medical issues. There were maybe 5 or 6 people who ended up in Conqueror within the first week for a variety of different things. Some of it was BMI being too high (in other words they were seriously overweight), most of the others for getting injured during the RNFA. Those who did had turned up with pre existing conditions that had slipped through the cracks, although how you manage to get injured on a 1.5 mile run is beyond me. Again they ended up in Conqueror eventually which is basically the rehab division. Some hang on for a few weeks before they miss too much of training and have to be back classed. We had one lad failed the RNFA and swimming test twice which resulted in him being discharged. Of most of the people who were put in Conqueror early on in training, they left of their own will. Similarly a few lads failed the swimming test and were put on remedials. One lad passed eventually and another was put in Conqueror until he passed it, he did and was then placed into a different division a few weeks behind us.

We didn’t actually have anyone discharged directly from our division but we had a few back classed, generally for racking up warnings. We had one lad put back to week 3 when we were in week 9 and had other lads who were put in our division after being back classed, one who’d been in phase 1 for like 6 months. I’m generalising here but everyone we came across later in training who had tonnes of warnings or was ‘injured’ were either milking it or just muppets who muddled their way through training. It’s not my decision obviously but there’s people who pass out and it’s beggars belief they make it that far. You really do have to be exceptionally unfit, unlucky with injuries or just daft not to pass out. Not to trivialise training, there’s more to it than that but if you just keep your head down you’ll get through it.

It’s worth adding as well you can’t leave until week 4 once you’ve signed that contract on day one. That’s when your PVR (premature voluntary release) clause matures and you can opt to leave the Navy. The whole point is those weeks should give you enough time to get into the swing of things. Your PVR lasts for six months from the day of joining or in the case of those under 18, six months from the day you turn 18. After that point you’re there for 4 years minimum, although some people put their one year notice in at the 3 year mark and leave as soon as they hit four years service. No matter how hard you try unless there’s extenuating circumstances like perhaps a close family member has passed away or you get seriously injured, they won’t let you leave before those 4 weeks.
 
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mick1199

Lantern Swinger
@mick1199

How did you cope with homesickness and did you ever consider PVR.
Honestly, in terms of homesickness I didn’t really cope with it at all and I considered PVR more times than I’d care to admit. There’s help there in terms of chaplaincy and the likes, and as much as the DIs seem like evil bastards they’re there for you to talk to as well. Failing that you can always talk to your oppos about it. I asked to leave in the first week which they obviously turned down. Managed okay through to week 4 where I asked one of my DIs what would happen if I decided to go and it would have meant asking to leave on the Friday where they give you the weekend to think it over, confirming on the Monday and then gone by Tuesday. Instead I muddled on, things got better and then for whatever reason I had another dip in week 8 and actually asked to leave. The DI convinced me to stay until at least pass out and admittedly those last two weeks were probably the most enjoyable of training, partly because I knew we were due to go home in a couple of weeks. It became a joke amongst the DIs and some of the staff about me asking to leave so many times, so in the end I just laughed about it.

I definitely wasn’t the only one who struggled in training and there were a fair few tears over the weeks, heated arguments and shouting matches but everyone made it in the end and no one left our division of their own volition. At the end of the day homesickness and missing loved ones is something I’ll have to learn to deal with if I want to make it as a submariner. At least in phase 2 I have the option of going home some weekends and a lot more freedom.
 

MrsDaPops

Midshipman
Honestly, in terms of homesickness I didn’t really cope with it at all and I considered PVR more times than I’d care to admit. There’s help there in terms of chaplaincy and the likes, and as much as the DIs seem like evil bastards they’re there for you to talk to as well. Failing that you can always talk to your oppos about it. I asked to leave in the first week which they obviously turned down. Managed okay through to week 4 where I asked one of my DIs what would happen if I decided to go and it would have meant asking to leave on the Friday where they give you the weekend to think it over, confirming on the Monday and then gone by Tuesday. Instead I muddled on, things got better and then for whatever reason I had another dip in week 8 and actually asked to leave. The DI convinced me to stay until at least pass out and admittedly those last two weeks were probably the most enjoyable of training, partly because I knew we were due to go home in a couple of weeks. It became a joke amongst the DIs and some of the staff about me asking to leave so many times, so in the end I just laughed about it.

I definitely wasn’t the only one who struggled in training and there were a fair few tears over the weeks, heated arguments and shouting matches but everyone made it in the end and no one left our division of their own volition. At the end of the day homesickness and missing loved ones is something I’ll have to learn to deal with if I want to make it as a submariner. At least in phase 2 I have the option of going home some weekends and a lot more freedom.
Glad you saw it through - sounds like out was really tough.

Obviously I went through phase 1 during COVID so there were some restrictions in regards to what we could go in terms of the programme. Largely it’s wasn’t changed, however we did miss out on doing proper IMF as in rope climbs and four corners and instead just did running and body weight circuits out on the astro turf. Similarly, we spent our first four weeks in Ganges block as a kind of isolation and we were tested weekly. Normally you’d go straight into your divisional block and your seniors would be able to help you out and give you some tips throughout training. We didn’t have that.

Phase 1 itself isn’t all that difficult, physically. Sure it’s hard, but if you think it’s going to be impossible and there’s things you won’t be able to do, then don’t. Everything is manageable and doable, even the more challenging evolutions like Dartmoor. We had a few people who were backclassed or discharged within the first few weeks, mainly for picking up injuries on easy things like the RNFA on day 2, which is just your first running test, or for failing it. What you’ll find is most people who get training extended or kicked out after that are generally just mongs who keep on racking up warnings and can’t keep their noses clean. Even some embarrassingly chunky and unfit people managed the likes of the stretcher run and Dartmoor and still passed out, so whilst fitness isn’t to be sniffed at you don’t need to be an athlete. Most of it is mental anyway and you will find that you can push yourself much further than you realised you could.

The mental side of training I found was much harder than a lot of the physical challenges and the general regime of constantly being on your feet and feeling knackered. This made everything a lot more difficult to deal with. I really struggled with home sickness, mainly missing my girlfriend, throughout the entire time I was there and my mood reflected that so I was pretty much miserable all of the time. That was something that I thought would be difficult to deal with but I was surprised at how hard it hit me. Everyone had their low points and other lads talked about leaving but no one ever did in my division. Some people just can’t get their head round the fact that phase 1 is just a massive game and that it’s ‘Not the real Navy’ as you’ll be told time and time again. I’ll be honest I nearly PVRd several times and I’m still coming to terms with being away from my loved ones, but that’s just the life of the Navy. Other people coped with it much better and I can definitely see why the Navy is a single man’s game, though I wouldn’t change anything.

The first few weeks at Raleigh are the worst by far. Week 1 is just admin, brief, admin, brief etc. You’ll hate it and the shock of capture really hits some people hard, it did with me and I cried myself to sleep practically ever night. I certainly wasn’t the only one either. You also have the RNFA on day 2 and the swim test on day 5. Those who fail get a second chance, in the case of the swimming test rehash it’s immediately afterwards and if you fail again you’ll be placed on swimming remedials. One lad in our division passed it after about eight tries and another ended up being put into Conqueror division until he passed, which he did but was obviously training extended and placed in a different division. As for the RNFA it doesn't matter how bad your time is, if it’s within your age groups time ignore it. You’ll get much much fitter by week 5. By the weekend of week 1 you start to acclimatise and get into a routine.

Week 2 you’ll start to get introduced to phys, IMF and drill which aren’t too bad. The drill instructors are brilliant and always have a laugh so they make what could be a very boring lesson into a fun one. Week 3 was Piers Cellars for us and was awful. I’ve never been so cold in my entire laugh, and that’s not an exaggeration. The weather was horrendous and the harbour water nearly sent a few lads into cold water shock. You have your first kit muster in week 4 which most people will pass first time, the common theme between those who failed was sheer laziness. Week 5 is your RNFT, for reference I got 12:46 on the RNFA in day 2 which is atrocious and I managed 10:13 on the RNFT, week 5. Still not a brilliant time for a 21 year old but it goes to show just how much fitter you’ll get even in five weeks. You’ll also do Jupiter Point in week 5, so messing around on boats.

Week 6 was MTU, which used to be in week 3 but apparently the pass rates have improved as you’re still in the militarisation stage in week 3. The staff apparently didn’t get that memo. This is the week where you’ll learn how to handle, strip and fire a rifle safely. Week 7 is Dartmoor, brutal and a slog but easily doable, just pack your bergen sensibly and compact and make sure your straps are secure and comfortable otherwise they’ll shred your shoulders. We also started learning arms drill at the beginning of that week and had our lead guard selection. It was comical how bitter the other class were that my class won.

Week 8 is another kit muster and CBRNDC school or Triumph Squadron. First aid, gas training, firefighting and Havoc. This week is incredibly laid back and pretty fun. Havoc was easily most people’s highlight of training. We didn’t get gassed because of something to do with faulty CS pellets. Also my class got to do Havoc but the other class didn’t as COVID had sent a few staff home so they did Chaos, which is like the soft play version of Havoc. Again, they clearly weren’t bitter.

Week 9 is a hang out. We did the assault course because we had COVID jabs in week 10 when you’d normally do it, which puts you on ‘light duties’ for 48 hours although we still did phys and drill. We also did the stretcher run which is easily the hardest physical challenge in all of training and rounded off the week with Audacious Defender. Week 10 is just drill, brief, drill, brief then pass out. You’ll spend time rehearsing your arms drill and passing out parade.

Next for me is Sultan for phase 2, I’m an MESM so that’s 32 weeks there and I’m starting there this Sunday.

Hope this helps! Any more questions fire away.
Thanks so much for the detailed write up, really helpful.

My son is due to start basic training in January; do you (or anyone else on here) know how rigidly the weekly pattern is adhered too? I’m wondering what will happen if it gets really cold or even snows?! I guess he’ll just be issued with cold weather gear and told to crack on… which I’m sure he’ll be fine with, it’s just the mum in me worrying!
 

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