United Kingdom National Defence Association


War Hero
Now I don't know too much about this but....... Having read the website I still don't know much about this!

The UKNDA is to have its public launch on 8th November 2007, as this organisation was inspired by discussions on a Naval Officers' forum I was hoping to gain some info from you chaps. Having read their website I am almost tempted to join, I say almost because they don't seem to be giving much away. By their own admission they seek to redress the issue of Defence as a national priority and the funding of that, my main question then.... how? Is this just a pressure group or an advisory group? does anyone know? How will it be funded, by membership subscription, donation, political/non-political/public/private fundraising?

I'm not attempting to degrade their position at all, I am genuinely interested for many reasons, anyone know the answers or is it a big secret to be revealed on 8th November?

Link to UKNDA Website

Edited to add: I know there is a sticky in the forum regarding both the NDA and BAFF but it doesn't come close to answering any of my questions and seems to be a little out of date.
Likewise CT, I'd like to know a little more about this organisation, but looking at the website I'm almost tempted to join too. Maybe if we could have a bit more info we could get an influx of people joining that are concerned about our Armed Forces. If it's legitimate, and could make a difference I'm all for it.


War Hero
It's an interesting one & still not sure whether it's advisory or pressure-group orientated, but, from the UKNDA Founding Paper (page 8 of 18) funding appears as follows. Whether that's simply it, I'm not sure:

8. Voluntary/Salaried work. Until secure and ongoing funding is established,
all personnel working for the NDA accept that their contributions are on a voluntary
and unpaid basis. The aspiration is that, as and when practical (i.e. secure funding is
in place) in order to at least in part recognise volunteers’ UKNDA work, those filling
UKNDA posts on the P&M Board might receive small annual honoraria payments;
this to be debated at some future formal Board meeting. As the UKNDA develops and
sufficient finance secured, essential UKNDA-related expenses will be reimbursed in
full. A salary scheme may, in the future, be introduced if/when the UKNDA expands
to such an extent as to require full time professional staff to be employed.
9. Sources of Funding. There are five sources of funding:
a. From private individuals (military and civilian) prepared to join the
UKNDA at an annual subscription fee of £12 – and for those joining as LIFE
MEMBERS – for a one off subscription of £100.
b. From corporate (business) bodies prepared to join the UKNDA as
‘Corporate members’ at an annual fee – to be discussed and decided between
and by the applicant and the UKNDA - variable according to the size of their
c. Donations. Donations to further the purpose of the UKNDA may be made
and sent to the UKNDA Company Secretary, PO Box 819, Portsmouth PO1
d. Legacies: For details contact the UKNDA Company Secretary

It states 5 sources of funding but only lists 4, unless it differentiates from annual subscribers & life subscription.

To be honest, at risk of being sceptical, the only corporate businesses wishing to contribute would be defence related ones- we then step into the quagmire of "bungs & back-handers" if this is a lobby group intent on winning contracts from whichever government is in power.
Unfortunately they appear to have a misconception of Ministers/MPs access to information about the state of the forces. This reminds me of criminologists trying to present Ministers with facts which were then compromised by realpolitik. MPs already have the facts available to them. What they choose to do with that information is quite another matter. You cannot ignore what is politically acceptable and financially possible given the limited resources available. The public is resistant to paying more tax, whilst wanting better public services and the latest in healthcare. Something has to give, and at present the perception is that a war in unlikely in the next 10 years.

Those that matter are in fact the electorate: that is, those sectors of the population with the greatest propensity to vote in the first place.

That's my opinion anyway.


Book Reviewer
I too am a wee bit unsure - I knew the Chairmans wife professionally for a number of years (she's not that long ago retired from an AFPAA role).

I can't see them being held in much regard as an advisory group - their CVs aren't that strong. I suspect they are setting up as a pressure group aming to push the cause of the military through the media.

Perhaps RR should just ask them?
Contributors Mode

Before you join this organization perhaps you should read all 70 odd entries in the link below, a sticky in CA.


The Chairman and his wife are not very highly thought of by some of our more respected contributors.

The Chairman has posted at frustrated in RR so a search of his posts may shed more light.



Book Reviewer
Interesting that had passed me by.

I don't know him at all but Angela I knew at work (Ma'am), okay to work with but not a spectacular Officer. I find it odd that a retired SO1 Loggie is the 'driving' force behind this. I would have at least expected a 1* Warfairie with a network of current Operational colleagues to support him.

I'm intrigued as to what they think offer and what they can achieve. All power to them for trying but after giving their documentation thus far (the HLS paper was thinner than pussers loo paper) I suspect that sadly whilst its no doubt a decent vehicle for keeping their retired grey cells alert it will achieve little more.


War Hero
wave_dodger said:
I find it odd that a retired SO1 Loggie is the 'driving' force behind this. I would have at least expected a 1* Warfairie with a network of current Operational colleagues to support him.

I think one of the issues with discussing this here is that anyone with any insight into the origins is unable to to participate.


War Hero
letthecatoutofthebag said:
I've read your post seven times now, and I don't know if I'm still befuddled from the rather excellent bottle of wine I enjoyed last night or whether you have more to reveal with this intrigue?

Sorry, I wasn't clear. The NR forum is passworded and as part of the terms the details of discussion should remain private.

I'd agree that to be effective the organisation needs more weight and whilst I'd generally agree with the principle, defence needs to be taken seriously in Whitehall, I'm unconvinced that it's presented a sufficiently compelling case to gain senior enough support. Despite the readership of the NR.

I'm not sure if discussion has evolved, I still subscribe to the magazine but I haven't bothered logging in since discussion of recent changes to PWO training failed to get beyond the demise of the long G.
Definitely a whiff of an (albeit well meaning) old boys club. What a new lobbying quango can achieve when their are much more powerful defence industry lobbyists failing to achieve the same aim is questionable. In my humble opinion the NDA and the defence industry are trying to achieve similar aims from different angles. The defence industry aims to boost procurement for their own profits but this does benefit the armed forces as a whole (more procurement=new ships and spud guns for the trees). The sad truth is a BAE funded lobby group will hold much more sway than a group of retired officers. Healthy donations to a government chest from a multi billion pound defence company is a much more persuasive medium than stern letters from retired admirals. And if, with two wars and multiple operations ongoing, we are still failing to push spending levels up i feel there is little that can hope to be achieved. But ten points for effort, better to have a hundred people shouting and achieving nothing than no one shouting at all..


Book Reviewer
(Repeating from another thread - Mods may wish to merge?)

I have been emailed about the UKNDAS with a list of names which to my mind make this organisation a lot more credible:



Admiral The Lord BOYCE GCB OBE DL
Marshal of the Royal Air Force The Lord CRAIG GCB
General The Lord GUTHRIE KCMG
The Rt. Hon Lord OWEN

VICE PRESIDENTS Military & Civilian (in alphabetical

Area of Interest:

Lt-General Sir Henry Beverley KCB OBE: Royal
Marine matters
Vice Admiral Sir Jeremy Blackham KCB: Royal Navy
Field Marshal The Lord Bramall KG GCB OBE MC:
Tri-Service interests
Col. Tim Collins OBE: Army matters
Lt-Gen Sir Michael Gray KCB OBE: Airborne Forces &
Normandy Vets
Air Chief Marshal Sir Michael Graydon GCB CBE ADC,
FRAeS: RAF matters
Marshal of the RAF Sir Peter Harding GCB, DSO,
FRAeS: RAF matters.
Brigadier (Professor) Richard Holmes CBE TD JP:
Army matters
Viscount Slim OBE DL FRGS: Special Forces
Col. Bob Stewart DSO: Army matters
Air Chief Marshal Sir Peter Squire GCB DFC AFC:
RAF matters
Lt Gen Sir Richard Vickers KCB LVO OBE: UKNDA
Dorset rep.


Rt. Hon. Michael Ancram, QC MP: Tri-Service
Sir Nicholas Bonsor Bt: Tri-Service interests
Rt Hon Baroness Dean of Thornton-la-Flyde: Chm HoL
Def Study Gp
Sir Richard Dearlove KCMG OBE: Intelligence.&
Rt Hon Bruce George MP: Tri-Service interests
Hon. Bernard Jerkin MP: Tri-Service interests
Paul Keetch MP: Tri-Service interests
Edward Leigh MP: Chm Pub. Accs. Cttee
Rt. Hon. Michael Mates MP: Tri-Service &
Patrick Mercer OBE, MP: Army matters
Hon. Nicholas Soames, MP: Tri-Service interests
Sir Keith Speed RD DL: Royal Navy matters
Glenmore S.Trenear-Harvey: Intelligence Analyst


War Hero
" regularly log on to the NR website, but do not contribute much. The publication remains a good read but there are a few too many GOMs on the website who have (at least) one foot in the past. I just re-read the discussion on PWO training and can see why you left."
Sorry to go slightly off topic but the NR website will not change unless your comments are known to its'AE-OL and the rest of the readership.