Crab Air Hipster Officer?

So, at 08:00 or thereabouts, I'm joined aboard the northbound London West Midlands Train by a slim, well-groomed, fresh-faced young-ish (early-to-mid-30s?) beardy bloke who sits down across the carriage from me, pulls a ThinkPad out of this briefcase and starts earnestly tippi-tapping away at the keyboard.

Pretty standard behaviour on a C21st commuter train, but for the fact that the dude was wearing the uniform of the RAF, with the rank slides of Squadron leader, combined (incongrously, to my mind) with a full set that wouldn't have looked out of place on a pack of old-skule Player's Navy Cut gaspers.

I seek enlightenment as to WTF are Crab Air up to? Following the Old Bill down a dangerous path of surrendering to modern fads and fancies where facial hair is concerned?
 
With effect from 1 September 2019, all RAF personnel are permitted to grow a full set beard.

A request must be made to the Commanding Officer in writing prior to any member of the RAF growing a beard.

Only full beards that are kept short and neatly trimmed will be permitted.

The Station Warrant Officer, on behalf of the Station Commander, will act as the final arbiter of what is, or is not, acceptable.

The following characteristics of beards are generally not permitted:

  • Beards taking excessive time to grow. The definition of an 'excessive amount of time to grow' remains within the subjective judgement of the Chain of Command (CoC). The advised maximum time to grow a sufficiently thorough beard is 2 weeks. RAF personnel are permitted to grow their beards whilst on duty.
  • Stubble. Stubble is assessed as any beard length shorter than Grade 1 (2.5mm). This does not include the grace period detailed above.
  • Beards of uneven growth/coverage. The definition of ‘uneven growth/coverage’ remains within the subjective judgement of the CoC.
  • Longer length hair growth/‘hipster’ beards. Longer length facial hair growth is not acceptable. The maximum acceptable length of a beard is Grade 8 (25.5mm)
The wearing of a beard as a tenet of a faith which does not comply with the criteria above remain permitted: direction as to how they may be worn can be sought from the HQ Air Diversity & Inclusion Team.

For further information, please view AP 3392 Vol 4 Lflt 1105 or contact Unit HR/P staff.
 

napier

LE
Moderator
Kit Reviewer

napier

LE
Moderator
Kit Reviewer
So, at 08:00 or thereabouts, I'm joined aboard the northbound London West Midlands Train by a slim, well-groomed, fresh-faced young-ish (early-to-mid-30s?) beardy bloke who sits down across the carriage from me, pulls a ThinkPad out of this briefcase and starts earnestly tippi-tapping away at the keyboard.

Pretty standard behaviour on a C21st commuter train, but for the fact that the dude was wearing the uniform of the RAF, with the rank slides of Squadron leader, combined (incongrously, to my mind) with a full set that wouldn't have looked out of place on a pack of old-skule Player's Navy Cut gaspers.

I seek enlightenment as to WTF are Crab Air up to? Following the Old Bill down a dangerous path of surrendering to modern fads and fancies where facial hair is concerned?
Starting a sentence with 'So'? What next, txt spk?
 

Daxx

MIA
Book Reviewer
YOLO.
 

Brotherton Lad

LE
Kit Reviewer
Thank goodness the Army doesn't do this sort of nonsense:

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1571227766668.png
 
The topic was done to death some months ago.

 
As soon as it was announced there was a rush to give it a go amongst the Light Blue fraternity but as I predicted at the time many fell at the first hurdle the SWO, then the Domestic CoS and then they began to appreciate the difficulties of maintaining said beards. I would estimate about 25% of the first flush have persisted.
 
The services are wedded to a lot of tradition (less the RAF, habits only) and mostly for good reason.

However, this particular one just needs to go away in the Army & RM. I see nothing wrong with a neat & tidy beard. Shave it off for ops where there's a CBRN threat, job done.

FIshheads should probably be allowed 'taches too.
 
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