Block leave and alternative arrangements.

Discussion in 'Army Pay, Claims & JPA' started by Mareng, Aug 24, 2009.

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  1. Firstly, my apologies if this in in the wrong place.

    I'm trying to simplify this, so bear with me.

    Soldier A is based in Germany and has a child from a previous marriage that he maintains contact with, who is resident in the UK.

    Soldier A has been given dates that he will be able to have contact with his child which fall within half term holidays etc as laid out by the childs' school, where he starts in September.

    Soldier A has stated that he cannot have him during those periods as they fall outside of when he has block leave 'allocated'. Also the child cannot be removed from school during term time, so we have a catch 22 situation.

    At this point, I should point out that during access, the child is either taken to Germany or up north to Soldier A's parents residence, so daily contact around school hours isn't possible.

    My question to to whoever has gotten this far is this.

    If Soldier A was to go to his CoC and ask that he take his leave at alternative times in order to facilitate his access visits, what are the chances of his request being actioned?

    Obviously I realise that it would be a local CoC decision and answers will vary unit to unit, but I'm just after a general feeling, as I am not and never have been in a situation where I was told when I can have my leave, bar leave bans in place around the time of large deployments/major unit exercises.

    Edited for mongness
  2. I'm sure his CoC would be very helpful in giving him his leave dates when requested, however he would have to realise that the needs of the service come first so, Career courses, Exercises, Op tours etc would take presidence and leave would be taken around these, however if he has nothing on and he's got an half decent boss he'll be ok.
  3. Soldier A is an ideal candidate for the block leave rear party at the Commanding Officers discretion.
  4. That's exactly what I was thinking, there's ways around everything provided you actually explore the options available. I was just beginning to doubt my own intuition following emails from Soldier A in which nothing he was saying made any real sense.
  5. Most units are short of bodies for the rear party and welcome volunteers.
  6. Given that school holidays are published well in advance, it would be helpful if the absence requests were well in advance to allow for planning. As mentioned above, rear party duties always have to be covered and can turn out to be quite easy. (Or sometimes not).

    Adding the detail of why the request is made outside block leave on the initial request would make good sense.
  7. Are you people seriously telling me you allow people to dictate to you when you MUST take your leave and that you have to ask permission NOT to take it.


    1.003 Coherent personnel leave planning is a function of the Chain of Command. Where possible, Service personnel should be allowed to take leave at the time of their choosing. Absence from duty is authorised or withheld by the CO as the exigencies of the Service permit. Authorised absence from duty affects the morale both of Service personnel and their families and should be withheld only to meet operational requirements or exigencies of the Service.

    I know I've been out of the field Army for 14 Months now but COME ON!
  8. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    All shouting aside, its the job and the nature of that job, if his leave can be fitted in around the requirements of the job then fine but Block leave is a normal item to allow for fully manned training for the next task in line. Its been a normal part of the Army for possibly a hundred years or more. Now if you can recall peacetime trickle leave when 25% of the unit could be on leave at any one time and recall how hard it was to carry out any full training with formations larger than a fire team you may then realise why Block leave is so attractive to the CoC. Trickle leave and the effect it had upon training was appalling, I only encountered such a poor manning level for training since was with the TA!

    Edited to add that even during the 80's when supposedly at peace the only time the Bn functioned properly was when block leave was the flavour of the month!
  9. Attractive to the CoC yes. To reach a point where people are afraid to ask to take leave outside of block, and have to ask how to do it on here...madness.
  10. At least the term 'Soldier A' sounds better than 'my mate'.
  11. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    It also worked out well for the lads, the only ones who suffered were the footy fans wanting to book every home game at the local stadium. If you had a personal need such as wedding etc if it was unit then they tended to happen during block leave, if it was non mil then leave was usually granted on the principle that it was rarely more than a few days and it seemed to work.
    If someone is too timid to ask about leave for personal reasons then they need to seek welfare help! :roll:
  12. Its not me that's afraid to ask for leave outside the block, its the other halfs ex husband that has claimed that he can't take his leave at any other time than what he has been allocated. Hence my question as to how easy it would be for him to ask to remain on the rear party and take his leave at another time.

    He's obviously being his usual helpful and co-operative self.
  13. When you say 'rear party' are you referring to an 'Op Tour' rear party, or just staying behind on Block leave?

    And now that you have cleared the situation up, I fully expect there to be more to this than meets the eye.
  14. samm1551

    samm1551 Old-Salt Book Reviewer


    It is not like civi street where you can book your leave whenever you feel like it unfortunately. Most battalions have block leave, although I understand that it is normally in school holidays unless you are placed on rear party which is mainly covered by singlies or volunteers according to my husband.

    I am in the opposite position, but I do know how important it is for my ex to see his son when we have block leave, so we have arrangements in place for that. I know how difficult it is for the children, and I also know how difficult it is for the parents when they don't see their kids for months on end. However the Army will see that operations are more important than leave which is sometimes where you may feel the difficulties lie. Situations like this are never easy even if the non resident parent lives in the same country. To me it sounds as if you need to sit down with soldier A when he next comes to visit his child and ask him to explain what the score is at his battalion. Only he can answer that.

    Whatever happens good luck with it.

  15. ugly

    ugly LE Moderator

    A lot of civvy firms require you to organise your own cover as they roster leave by job and pay grade!