Chilwell, wots that all about???

As it is now becoming apparent that more and more of us weekend warriors may be warrioring on more prolonged basis I feel it is about time that there was some more info about what actually goes on at Chilwell.

Obviously do not breach OPSEC but could anyone who has been through the sausage machine, or even better someone who works there, provide some info on what actually goes on, any top tips of stuff that should be taken, do you go straight through and then onto your new unit or do you get time to get home and sort out any last minute dramas??

any other info or advice would be appreciated.

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE keep this thread sensible, I will be draconian in deleting any time wasting posts.

Thanks for your help and info in advance,


If you ask your SPSI (nicely), he should be able to dig out the Chilwell video for you. It tells you all about the process.

you'll find the staff there who are most critical about the T.A. are the C.O. and the T.A. staff.
Why not visit the government website officially acknowledged as having the most broken links. The section on Chilwell is pretty good and though I suspect that the word Swamped may apply these days I guess they will be trying to go through the motions.

Having said that any input from those who have been and done in the recent past would be even better.


Book Reviewer
We had the CO oc Chilwell speak at a recent weekend, and he came across as pretty pro-STAB.  He said it was now one day at Chilwell, and five at Grantham, for all those mob'd in Phase 2.

By the way, our guys now getting the brown envelopes, sent 2nd class.  One was postmarked on Fri 7th, he got it on Mon 10th, has to be at Chilwell on Weds 19th.  Not much time to sort out your job, flat, car, girlfriend, etc.  Not bad, for a Unit at R7, but makes a mockery of the "readiness" system.  All that does is limit the kit we get, and the priority for training areas and stores ("you can't have that range, it's booked by the Cadets, far more important than you")

Oh, and the poor beggar only passed his trade qual course at Christmas ;D


for all'ya goin ta grantham; unlucky... frostbite is on general issue, just get down stickies and get some fat old birds before ye go out to the sandy yonder

You are quite right: the Unit is at R7, but individuals are not....



i was told that readiness state (R7 etc) was a political / financial thing.  we are having units placed 'ready' with basic training i.e. able to, but proficient (not overly trained) to do the job.  lets all face it, when needed, we will be called, and not untl then.  we are getting messed about, not knowing if we will have our jobs or not, next week, and even our CVHQ don't know, only LAND.   The thing the gov are most worried about, is money.  calling the whole of the TA out would be a financial nightmare, but lets face it, they could prob back fill all of the vacant spaces... and make the reg army more efficient and happeir with itself, but then the regulars would still complain about having too much work.

lets start from base principals,   sort out the REME and RLC, then sort out the other support arms.  you are never going to be in short supply of 'hat' inf; once you have sorted this out, then worry about getting reg battalions of inf etc up to UE, then WFE establishment when necessary .

ahhh, rant over
A colleague of mine went to RTMC yesterday to brief them on something or other. He was very impressed with the current processing system which deals with the 250 or so blokes per day.

It seems that on arrival you are "barcoded", allowing the team there (some 200+ staff) to identify where everyone is during their day there, what G1/G4 stands they have been through and where those not being accepted into service are "failing". Not as bad as it sounds as at least problems can be dealt with quickly.

Medical fails seem the flavour of the day. Lots of people trying it on for other things (particularly ex-regulars) but they are generally put back in their box. Claiming you are a Class A drug user once accepted into service is not a clever stunt to pull!

The QMs inload about 5 million items on a daily basis (no desert combats though!) and for those who experienced it pre mass callout the old "drill hall" by the platoon offices is now a dining room with a field kitchen in it!

Generally he came back with a good feeling about the place. Slick process, tailored for the blokes going through, so a good thing really. I think the main problem is the other areas of the system which isn't so goos (APC for example) which let the side down.
As i mobilised last June, i'm sure due to the current political climate the process will be a bit different to when i attended Chilwell.

in brief: I arrived (early, as i came from accross the big duck pond) got my room and was free to roam, go to the Naffi , get my car fixed etc.

The next day when i was to actually report, i went to a large hall where numbered tables were set out. Each person went through completing the relevant paperwork, id cards, docs, photos etc.

Put into sections and attended a few lectures.

Kit sorted out at QM's which was a veritable sweetie shop of kit. Gucci Boots, extra combats etc

Med/Dent checks carried out to see if you're medically fit

Until i'd actually signed on the dotted line, i didn't get into uniform.

Once in said uniform, we started on training program of all ITD's that you would normally carry out over the length of the TA year, plus a few extras that you may not normally do at your unit. Then there were Range days, PT ( oh, the PT!!) etc etc

The weekend was free to do with as you choose. Alot of people went home for one last weekend.Not being local, i went to Nottingham to get pissed.

The next week there was a sweep up of any stragglers itd wise. Pay was sorted out there and then by the great team at Chilwell. Any problems could be rectified without having to go through Glasgow first etc

Injections given for various locations ie The old hot and sunny places got Anthrax etc

Given a printout of itd's completed and an assessment of your performance over the 2 weeks. The old number letter system B2 etc

I'm sure it's probably alot more hectic now but they did have a huge hanger to accomodate the countless numbers of troops which was so big it was hard to see the other end.

Anyway, i hope that's given you some idea of what to expect. They basically kit you out and make sure you are fit to fight.

ta ta ;)
update on Chilweel now that the blokes have been through and the stories are back in the unit

process seems to be arrive and report by 1300hrs, briefings and initial paperwork that day, next morning medical, dental, follow up on docs, sign up for insurance, fill in a will (except hofficers who must arrive with a proper will completed by a solicitor, got to make sure the family silver is looked after apparently)

If you pass that lot you get sworn in and get a brief on anthrax vaccine, take it or leave it its your choice.

this is where the actual info and the rumours about the possible next round of mobilisations comes in.  

Last lot then spent three days at grantham doing ITD trg then went onto their holding unit before deploying.

the next lot are apparently expected to turn up having already conducted ITD trg and will go straight from Chilwell to the holding unit.

One further point of caution... experience seems to be that the QM dept at chilwell is everybit as helpful as all other QM depts in HMF.  stores are for storing, no/minimal kit was issued, apparently they did their best but by the time my lot arrived the stores had been emptied, all the guys were assured that they would all receive kit at their holding unit.  Funny old thing, when they got their the unit knew nothing about issuing kit, they were expecting fully kitted soldiers to arrive, hence most deployed to the gulf with ill fitting noddy suits, US respirators and only one waterbottle, plus people issued LSW and 8 mags at chilwell still only had the TA support arm issue of one ammo pouch.  for once we couldnt even blame the unit QM for sending them down unprepared as we issued every bit of kit we had spare from our stores before they left, poor QM cant get hold of a single item to kit out the new recruits who are flooding in thanks to the free advertising thats going on at the minute.

end of rant!!!
The most entertaining thing about Chilwell must be the J1 cell.  You go in, barter with a clerk for 20 mins then walk out with your salary.  The most likely to be affected are Cpls and below. Their pay band ceiling is £22,500, after that to get additional money, (to start to match your earnings in the past year) you have to prove hardship.

One LCpl walked into the J1 cell presented a P60 for approx £315,000.  No one was willing to give him an answer!
It appears from the press that they know the TA units that are providing the bods for the next lot and I know that there are briefings planned (have happened?).

Hopefully our RHQ won't just sit on it and instead brief us in turn. :-/
Have been through both sides of Chillwell (mob and Demob)

On the whole its not bad. However it is designed for individuals not units.  As a TA soldier you have nost of the kit they will give you. An extra set of greens was nice, but some desert boots would have been more use.  Pay is dealt with in as fair a way as the system allows. Chillwell do what they can for you if you give them proof of expenditure (not income). However there were still problems with some of the lads pay. Medical was fine dental was tougher. Grantham Phase was good if a bit of egg sucking if you were up to speed with ITDs.

Demob was fast and efficient, with pay problems sorted out. Only problem is our vehicles came back 3 weeks after we were demobbed. Noone had considered the need to offload unit and personal kit.

Over all 7/10


Just finished at Chilwell, and found 90% very well run, the fact they have to deal with 200 punters at a time. 10% was complete $hite. Time wasted, TA FTRS who think they are in the SAS. Ranges that could be run much better- In fact the SASC QMSI is going to show them how to run them correctly next time- just so they know. (He also tore a Sgt a new ar$$e for his comments on the 'CFT'!)

Did a lot of egg sucking - but the Perm Staff have such a big job to do they have no time for indivduals petty personal problems, Oh and don't have an ND on the Range or you might find yourself staying at RTMC for a bit longer!
Been a while since I was at Chilwell, but sounds like kit issue is still same. If you've got decent issued webbing, (infantry bergan, odd 'aquired' extras etc), take it with you, as you'll get issued absolute minimum, minus a bit.
To be frank, if you're up to speed with your Mil skills, a lot of it will be wasted.
Finally, enjoy Chilwell, It was much better than the clusterf**k that was Baja Luka in the late 90's, (But that's another story...)

Keep your head down and your chin up!
:twisted: stop bitching I got 7 days notice. Make sure you take detailed proof of earnings and Outgoings (if you will be on RHA) they will try and get you as much as they can but they have to submit proof with the application.
ex RTMC staff (not PolarB)
well they want to make savings on defence the best one i could propose is close chillwell and allow the receiving units to deal with all the admin and training maybe they would actually get it right.
I've tried to no avail to get an up to date list of the Black Bag contents to save on me buying/bringing stuff that'll be duplicated to that end, is there anyone who has mobilised through or who works at Chilwell who can provide an itemised list.......TIA

BTW I've checked the Soldier Mag link etc, they just provide an overview.

Hopefully this isnt breaking any opsec/rules etc

Here goes...
Rifle with new foregrip/pop out bipod
6 plastic mags with windows
6 magpuls
Cleaning Kit
CBA, Cover, Plates
Mk6A Helmet
MTP + Des Helmet cover
Des shelter sheet and bag
MTP Bergan + Daysack Covers
MTP Ammunition Grab Bag (Man Bag)
Self Inflating Roll Mat (Thermarest style)
MTP Daysack (Karrimor)
Gerber Crucifix, Gerber Torch and Silva Headtorch
IR Transmitter (Mockingbird??)
2 Respirator Canisters
Des Camelbak
Black Kit Bag
Jungle Sleeping Bag, Compression Sack, Liner
Black Thermal Mug
Safety Specs
2 Washing Bags
3 Sweat rags
Insect Head Net
Big Carabiner
2 Field Dressings
Ear PLugs
Hiviz Belt
Large + Medium Towels (Quick drying special towels)
Boot Brush
Knee Pads (I got the old style for some reason)
4 Tshirts
5 Socks
4 Boxers
2 Des Gloves
2 Des Shorts
Des Magnums
Des Meindles or Lowas (Infantry get 1 of each or 2 of 1, everyone else gets 1 or the other, I chose Meindles)
Black Steel Toe Cap Magnums (I'm a VM, think chefs get them too)
Des Belt
4 MTP shirts (I'm on a summer tour, for some reason winter tour get 3 MTP + 1 Des)
4 MTP Trousers (I'm on a summer tour, for some reason winter tour get 3 MTP + 1 Des)
2 MTP Smocks
1 Pair of MTP Rank Slides
1 Hat with neck flap

From Memory Winter Tour also get -
Softie Jct + Trs
Des Goretex Jct + Trs
Black Proboots
DPM Deputy Dawg Goretex Hat

I wish this list was here before I went to Chilwell!!

And also, all you do at Chilwell is MATTS, so all the kit you need is fairly normal.

Annoyingly you do not get told any of this before Chilwell, they say they are trying to get a kit list/program put into the joining instructions.

As far as I know everyone gets the middle weekend off.

Do not bring your own car unless there is no other way of getting there. A few of my lot did and we had to take them home on the middle weekend (a 300 mile each way trip for me) and make our own way back.

The rooms are basic 8 man rooms, with 1 and a half wardrobes to share between 2, and a wee chest of drawers. Duvets, covers, sheets, 2 pillows, and pillow cases are provided.

Be prepared to spend ALOT of time waiting in queues/monging it so bring books and ipod wherever you go, especially on the first couple of days. Day 1 is Medical and Dental, Day 2 is J1 (Pay and admin) and J4 (QM's), Or vice-versa.

Make sure you can pass a PFT (Bleep test instead of a run if its snowy/icy) and a CFT or you will have to stay an extra week in Chilwell doing remedial PT. TBH if you cant pass both you shouldnt be there, it was worrying the amount of people that failed on mine.

Also I would advise getting a quick checkup at your own dentist a couple of weeks before you go so you have nothing to worry about, and time to sort anything out that needs done.

Hopefully this is of help to anyone going down to Chilwell, and good luck!!
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