• ARRSE have partnered with Armadillo Merino to bring you an ARRSE exclusive, generous discount offer on their full price range.
    To keep you warm with the best of Merino gear, visit www.armadillomerino.co.uk and use the code: NEWARRSE40 at the checkout to get 40% off!
    This superb deal has been generously offered to us by Armadillo Merino and is valid until midnight on the the 28th of February.

Generals told to travel 2nd class

From The Sunday Times
March 28, 2010
Generals told to travel 2nd class
Isabel Oakeshott, Deputy Political Editor

GORDON BROWN has delivered a final humiliation to the armed forces by ordering admirals, generals and air chief marshals to travel second class to help cut costs.

All armed forces personnel must now sit in standard class on trains and planes, whatever their rank, under a new rule that has provoked anger across the political parties.

Denis MacShane, the Labour MP and a former foreign minister, said: “Surely there are limits to how much humiliation we impose on senior officers.”

Major-General Patrick Cordingley, who commanded the 7th Armoured Brigade — the Desert Rats — during the first Gulf war, said there were “very good reasons” to allow first-class travel for senior personnel.
I take it the irony of this is wasted on the self serving sh1ts that currently occupy Downing Street?

I seem to remember certain MPs stating that it was 'Vital' that they traveled in 1st Class in order for them to be able to conduct their work.

MPs are still entitled to first-class train travel, and there is no plan to restrict first-class travel for government ministers.
While I am no fan of anyone traveling 1st Class at the expense of the taxpayer it is the hypocrisy of the decision that sticks in my throat.

Yet another example of MPs handing down instructions that they are unwilling to adopt themselves.
Surely no-one should be taking protectiveky marked papers on a train in the first place?

And I don't see why one could safely assume that others in first class seats are less if a threat than those elsewhere. If it's vital work be carried out during travelling time, an there is no unclassified work on the to-do list, then a car is required.
Surely there are bigger and better savings to be made elsewhere? Is this yet another random headline-grabbing initiative that's pulled out of the Downing Street Bran Tub marked "Ill thought-out and Desperate Ideas"?
Anybody still think we can still win in Afg? This nothing to do with money, in the overall scheme of things travel costs are nothing. This is the Gobment saying get back in your box. Labours traditional dislike of the forces will always come to the fore.
Disco said:
Since when was 2nd class humiliating? Or is that just a fear for Times readers!
I don't think that it's a matter of that, is it? It is a matter of principle. Whilst in principle, it's correct that all Govt personnel should travel at the cheapest practical cost, it's not consistant with equivalent other Govt officials, is it?

I work in Govt and I know that all staff when flying over 3 hours on an official trip, go Club. That's enormously wasteful. I think that the barrier should be raised to 5 hours at least. I also had to travel to a meeting last week. The ticket on the day was 122 quid, but I managed to get it through trainline for 35. I posted this snippet of info on our Intranet, only to be met with borderline hostility. It's all about saving money, isn't it? But, in an effort to not seem like I'm contradicting myself, I'd like to state that train journeys for senior staff of less than let's say 2 hours should be at standard rate.


Book Reviewer
This, like the pay freeze for senior Govt employees and all the fuss about bankers, is only got up by No.10 in order to try and provide alternative targets to the MPs who are still shamelessly coining it in and fiddling the system so they don't have to pay back, and touting their backsides for money to anyone who will be fool enough to pay. Please, Journos, keep the spotlight on MPs and Peers and their dodgy racketeering. If Govt really want to save money there are umpteen things it could stop paying for right now such as subsidising Communism in the Unions.


Book Reviewer
the_guru said:
I work in Govt and I know that all staff when flying over 3 hours on an official trip, go Club.
That might be what we're theoretically entitled to, but it isn't what we get. There isn't enough money in the budget - so we go economy and get more people to more places instead.


Well in fairness, it would not be unreasonable to get the standard class ticket paid for by the govt then pay for the upgrade yourself, I used to do that when I had to travel working in the HO
Preaching to the Choir, But it just turns everyone else off and apathy sets in with these silly stories.
We wonder why we have low voter turnout? Flip side to this has anyone asked the Conservatives if they would sanction First Class Rail Travel for Senior officers?
Since when has a PR measure of this level of savings been drawn up by the PM personally? This is just the clear direction from PR10 that all staff (Mil and CS) are to travel standard class unless the first class seats are cheaper (which does occasionally happen on some routes). Personally I'd rather save some money by not sitting in a bigger seat than by cutting a programme, but who knows.
Utter non story from the Times - their defence coverage is getting very patchy and trivial as of late - a shame.
Pling said:
Just a minor point but when was the last time a General got a travel warrant or even got on a train for offical business!
Quite possibly never, the only officers I've seen get on a train (at MOD expense) are young 2Lt/Lt, Captians and Majors normally use their personal cars, then claim the fuel costs back and Lt Col (and above)usually have a car and driver provided by the army.
I love the idea of a Labour MP admitting that travel on the second class carriages of trains of this great socialist Utopia is in fact an humiliation!
Of course there will be a knock-on effect. Those of us who travel in first class carriages between Bristol and London listening to members of the procurement community giving away masses of commercial information by mobile, lap-top screen or carelessly shuffled paperwork will need to move into second class too. Thus the FGW coffers will finally be bankrupted with only Eurostar passengers travelling in their first class carriages on discounted tickets!
jrwlynch said:
the_guru said:
I work in Govt and I know that all staff when flying over 3 hours on an official trip, go Club.
That might be what we're theoretically entitled to, but it isn't what we get. There isn't enough money in the budget - so we go economy and get more people to more places instead.
You obviously don't work at the FCO.
Speaking of hypocrisy.

All civil serivce and local goverment staff should be contributing to their own pensions and not expecting those outside their sector to be picking up the tab.

Latest Threads