5 (V) MI North West is best

#1
What is happening with 5 (V) MI Bn? It seems that the powers that be are not really looking at the bigger picture when it comes to the proposed location of said HQ.

In the West corner there is the soon to be vacated Peninsula Barracks in Warrington complete with civvy staff, stores, MT etc.

It also boasts excellent communications links. Being on the M6 makes it easily accessible for Bristol and Birmingham. By rail it is on the West Coast Mainline and Transpennine routes for the North East and is in spitting distance of Manchester and Liverpool airports for the Celts.

Apparently NW RFCA are supporting such a move to the hilt.

In the East corner there is a possible site somewhere in York as yet undecided possible a new build who knows? It boasts a rail connection to London and that’s about it.

The favourite? York if course!

As long as I can remember there has been a extreme London/South East bias to 3 (V) MI with weekends in out of the way locations far down south that were extremely inconvenient for anyone outside of the M25 bubble.

As 5 (V) MI will bring together the non-London coys why are 3 (V) MI getting to choose where the HQ will be?

Of course, how silly of me! I know Warrington is terribly working class and oikish whilst York is far posher – so that’s decided then.

Even though 20 per cent of regular army recruits come from the North West it is relatively a military desert.

Any way that the Corps can raise the profile of the Army as a whole should be applauded not to mention the jobs that will be lost because TPTB have little or no idea of what exists outside of the M25 and choose locations that sound good rather then places that are easily accessible to as many people as possible and which offer the best accommodation.

Rant over.
 
#2
I agree, why would we want to recruit people from that side of the Pennines anyway. Warrington is VERY easy to get to from either Manchester or Liverpool and the satellite towns. The transport infrastructure to the rest of the known world is also as broad as it is plentiful - much like the culture, intelligencia and generally all-round good eggs that reside in its lush green hills and dales. A tear wells as I am so very far away from its beauty

Also it is blatantly obvious that people from God's Country possess far superior intellect than those of its North Eastern neighbours. :wink:

I feel the southerners are just threatened by our greatness, no other logical explanation!!!!
 
#3
Sir_Sidney_Ruff_Diamond said:
Even though 20 per cent of regular army recruits come from the North West it is relatively a military desert.
possibly because the threat is historically from the south east? french b*stards.

and i guess that makes all you north-westerners REMFs...? :)
 
#4
Personally, I vote for Warrington, because I'm coming up to the end of my 22 and intend to settle in Cheshire. if it was there, I'd join the Stabs, no problem.
But there's no sodding way I'd travel to York, or Chorley, or wherever else the nearest Unit was.
 
#6
But who cares where it is ? We'll continue training where we do at the moment so it's just a different address to post the paperwork to. I don't know about anyone else but I'd identify with Coy first, Bn second.

To my jaundiced eye this split does little more then generate a new Lt Col post - oh, and introduce a new bar to developing one's career by moving around. What used to be an inter-Coy move will now be an inter-Bn move.
 
#7
One_of_the_strange said:
But who cares where it is ? We'll continue training where we do at the moment so it's just a different address to post the paperwork to. I don't know about anyone else but I'd identify with Coy first, Bn second.

To my jaundiced eye this split does little more then generate a new Lt Col post - oh, and introduce a new bar to developing one's career by moving around. What used to be an inter-Coy move will now be an inter-Bn move.
You forgot about another RSM, 2ic and Adj - all of which will be regulars. Moving between Bns is not a bar to a career, us proper soldiers do it every 2 years!
 
#8
OOTS the issue here as I see it is more than just personal promotion issues.

It is that senior staff can make decisions based on their own prejudices rather than looking at the alternatives dispassionately thinking about recruitment and retention issues, access to large centres of population as well as the obvious ease of access from road, rail and air and the quality of accommodation.

Lets face it if Peninsular barracks was good enough for 5/8 KINGS and the KCR then surely it is good enough for 5 (V) MI. Unfortunately outside of the M25 seems to be 'There be Dragons' as far as 3 (V) MI is concerned especially that bit on the map called 'The North'
 
#9
Sir_Sidney_Ruff_Diamond said:
Unfortunately outside of the M25 seems to be 'There be Dragons' as far as 3 (V) MI is concerned especially that bit on the map called 'The North'
True, to work on Stamford, Salisbury Plain or in Bulford, it seems you have to come from Belfast, Birmingham or Bristol.
 
#11
Leaving aside the recent attack of "grumpy old git" I suffered in my first reply a move of HQ will not really affect the specialist Coys who train away from the TAC. My crack about a new address to send the forms to is very close to the truth. By no means everyone is near enough to a det to train regularly during the week.

3 MI has always recruited nationwide and many of us travel daft distances to train so a second HQ anywhere has got to be a gain. Unless of course they won't let 3 MI soldiers administer and train via the 5 MI THQ/det next door and vice versa - oh Lord, please don't let that be the case ...

Mind you, after more years than I want to admit to with them I am rather cynical - depressingly so if I analyse it closely. So senior staff making decisions based on spurious criteria fails to raise more than a flicker on the meter. No doubt the Colonel would see that as my fault but if I wait long enough he's gone and I'm still here so why should I care ?

My only other source of potential worry would be the functional split the new orbat represents. One of the benefits of having one Bn with all INT aspects represented was the cross-fertilisation of ideas and concepts that occurred - now we're all split up we could become somewhat insular.
 
#13
Sir_Sidney_Ruff_Diamond said:
OOTS the issue here as I see it is more than just personal promotion issues.


Lets face it if Peninsular barracks was good enough for 5/8 KINGS and the KCR then surely it is good enough for 5 (V) MI. Unfortunately outside of the M25 seems to be 'There be Dragons' as far as 3 (V) MI is concerned especially that bit on the map called 'The North'

No, No..far too much parking facilities at Warrington old chap.
 
#14
Two CO's, two RSM's, other duplicated LSN's etc. etc. ? Not empire building, surely ? Why do you think DSF retains 21 and 23, rather than a single, nationwide pool of SAS(R) with a single Lt Col in charge? Works a treat until you run out of Regulars to fill the PSI posts, or - even more importantly - staff the duplicated Trg Coys.

MI (V) Risk Register for DInt:

Southern Bn gets the Gucchi exercises, ops tours at STRATEGIC/OPERATIONAL level, better access to DISC courses, increased MTD allowance (well, we're nearer to London, the MoD, the 'heart of government' you know).

Northern Bn ends up with all the TACTICAL level meat and potatos work, develops chip on shoulder about being the poor cousin.

:roll:
 
#15
One_of_the_strange said:
My only other source of potential worry would be the functional split the new orbat represents. One of the benefits of having one Bn with all INT aspects represented was the cross-fertilisation of ideas and concepts that occurred - now we're all split up we could become somewhat insular.
Oh really, I thought 3 MI Bn currently did Sy training as well as "all INT aspects". Insular would be an incorrect description, what you would hopefully get is TA specialists. Ignoring the Coys that only do IMINT and HUMINT, this has always been a failing of the TA soldier. Having INT CORPS TA personnel that actually have credible and current trade skills will only better their reputation. Again I make the point that the regulars have already done this in the UK with no detriment and 1 MI Bn is now bringing back specialised Coys. The MI concept only works at Bn level, with Coys (or Sects of) specialising in Int or Security. If you are busy with a PS cycle, you don't have the time to lose half the Sect for a Bde CAST Exercise.
 
#16
All good stuff. As I understand it there will be a split between strategic (Londoners) and tactical (everyone else) whatever the pros and cons of this are are up for debate. I am more concerned with the TA mantra of recruitment and retention.

In the past the policy of putting TA locations near regular security sections was lazy and ill thought out with seemingly no research being done into where would be the best place to ensure a good flow of recruits.

York is a prime example of somewhere difficult to get to. For example Barnsley would be a far better location as it is central to South and West Yorkshire. But it doesn’t sound trendy ergo 3(V) MI chose York.

The same applies to Chorley this is an excellent location easily accessible for anyone in Merseyside, Greater Manchester or South and East Lancs. However anyone without a bit of local knowledge hears Chorley and turns up their nose whilst setting off the Working Class Oik alarm. With a few decisions made and money invested this could easily become a Bn location.

The East Midlands conurbation is another blackhole. Somewhere around Loughborough would be ideal for recruiting from Leicester, Nottingham and Derby conurbations.

At the end of the day 3 (V) MI are making legacy decisions based on personal prejudices that the members of 5 (V) MI will have to live with whilst they retreat back to their City of London bunker.

Instead of vanity projects in York they should be concentraiting on ensuring that accommodation decisions don’t lead to people losing their jobs (in Warrington) and that significantly improve the recruitment footprint of the new battalion.
 
#17
Op_Int_and_Spy: You are quite right, I should have said Int and Sy.

One of the things I have observed over the years as that mobilised TA - specialist Coys aside - are very rarely called up to a job they have been trained in detail for. Hence a breadth of experience and ability to learn quickly are what is required. If you specialise the whole of the TA you had better be very very sure you know your future requirements in terms of trade and numbers - based on actual manning not paper figures - or else you risk being worse off than at present.

I once worked with some US reservists and they specialise along the lines you suggest. For instance, one of them did the IPB terrain overlay. Good as any reg I'm sure. But any other job in the cell ? Forget it, unless you wanted to go back to basics and teach. Is that really what you want ?

I'd also point out that other cap badges acknowledge that you can't get 5 day a week skills on 2 days a month so they run refresher courses immediately prior to deployment. Maybe we should too. As for credible and current trade skills, I'd politely point out that we operate within the constraints of the resources given to us by the regulars and the fact that we don't do it full time.

Finally, the reg soldier gets posted around regularly. A TA soldier may stay in their sub-unit for the entireity of their career. I would suggest that the two cases are not analogous.
 
#18
Sir_Sidney_Ruff_Diamond said:
The same applies to Chorley this is an excellent location easily accessible for anyone in Merseyside, Greater Manchester or South and East Lancs. However anyone without a bit of local knowledge hears Chorley and turns up their nose whilst setting off the Working Class Oik alarm. With a few decisions made and money invested this could easily become a Bn location.
I do concur, Chorley,home of the famous Chorley cake. Maaaarvelous.

Accomodation is fab too....uh oh, hang on a minute, it won't work....far too much parking facilities again.
 
#20
Fagbrew raises important points. Pies, cakes and other local delicacies have always been important to the TA Int Corps soldier, especially Fagbrew. I was once told by someone close to him that feeding him was like feeding a St Bernard. The issue of parking is significant. I always thought it slightly odd that the drill night was changed to coincide with the medics who also occupy the building. Tuesday nights in Chorley are like a visit to Carcraft. Mind you at least it doesn't cost 3 grand an hour like Worship Street and you can't get a decent pie down in London anyway. They all contain proper meat instead of the usual lips and ass encased in suet. It's grim up North and we are purists after all.
 

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