Joining regiments and background.........

Discussion in 'Officers' started by HH_2, Nov 3, 2008.

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  1. Having reached the stage in the joining process where I've been successful at main board, I'm looking at various parts of the army and trying to decide which is for me!

    I don't have any experience of the army outside a couple of fam visits and having done briefing and main board, so apologies if my question seems particularly stupid, but I would like to ask: how easy it is to join regiments which have strong regional affiliations when you don't have any connection with that region via family or residence?

    For example if I was from london and I wanted to join the Yorkshire regiment, or Royal scots, would it be the case that most officers trying to join those regiments would have some sort of background there, i.e family from the area of having lived there?
     
  2. PS. I deliberately tried to avoid posing the typical bone question along the lines of "do you need to own half of berkshire if you want to join the Cav?" but I may have succeeded in asking a bone question anyway, if this is the case then sorry :D
     
  3. Unfortunately, the "Old boys" network is still very much an issue within much of the army when it comes to officers. If I were you mate, Id go for whatever regiment you wish to get a commission in. Dont be put off by the posh public school boys/girls, if you feel you have something to offer a regiment then go for it!
     
  4. why if your from London would you want to join the Royal Scots Borders as they are now or the Yorkshires unless you have some sort of affiliation with them?
     
  5. Well I'm from Dorset so who do I join now? The Rifles where the only Dorset link appears to be a small badge on the dress uniforms, which incidentally comes from the Devons.
    He may be from London but have studied in more Northern parts thus developing a link.

    Apply to join whoever you want go for an interview and possibly a visit and they'll give you a steer on whether they reckon you'll fit in with them or should concentrate elsewhere.
     
  6. I know one guy who served in the royal scots as an officer that was from the London/SE region, so its not impossible by any means. If you are a good officer candidate, they will want you.
     
  7. First up, decide which bit of the Army you want to join - by the sound of it you have decided on the Infantry. If you are sure about this then it becomes easier. Have a look around the Infantry regiments that you are interested in and go and visit them. When you get to RMAS you will probably change your mind again when you find that there are new mates going to other regiments and you would like to go in that direction. Ultimately it does not matter, you have plenty of time. Don't rule yourseld out of any regiment - if they decide that you are not for them then they will tell you. It is your choice too. Good luck.
    whf
     
  8. Hi HH2

    Without wanting to sound patronising, don't make things too complicated. The whole process is a lot less shadowy than aspirant officers on ARRSE seem to think.

    Visit the regiments you're interested in and ask yourself:

    1. Does their role excite you? Do you think your character and skills will suit you in it?

    2. You're not likely to see much of the soldiers on your visit, so think hard about the mess. Do you enjoy the company of your future comrades and seniors? Are they the kind of people you naturally fit in with? You will spend a lot of time with them, so make sure. Are they hard-working, hard-playing characters who take pride in performing professionally, and are they quietly dedicated to their soldiers?

    3. Geographically, will life in the regiment suit you? If you've a girlfriend who is dedicated to her own career in the UK, and you're a committed calvinist, then a Germany-based regiment won't suit you

    Things which matter to the regiment when assessing you against your peers:

    1. The opinion of the mess's subalterns i.e. whether they think you are a good bloke who is good on the lash, knows a dozen good-looking girls and could be persuaded to pimp out his sister at the mess summer ball.

    2. The opinion of the wider mess - whether you have a good understanding of the regiment you hope to join, its role and ethos.

    3. How you perform at Sandhurst. No room for nice blokes who aren't too keen on PT, or prefer social soldiering to getting knackered grimy in an Infantry Bn which is likely to head off to Helmand.

    4. The opinion of the Regtl bigwigs in your preliminary interviews - do you understand how tough, tedious and rewarding life leading men in Afg / Iraq could be? And are you fully committed to it nonetheless?

    Contrary to popular belief, things which do NOT matter to the regiment when you visit:

    - Whether you prefer racquet sports to team games, or have a dubious taste in Prince of Wales check ( despite the worries of those on the RCB thread )

    - If you have a private income

    - Where you're from. The Corps recruit from all over the shop, the Infantry is now in amalgamated regiments which also do so, and the officers come from anywhere and everywhere. We've some officers who've been to the same school as some of their Jocks, while others were brought up on different continents. Doesn't matter one bit.

    If you have some kind of affiliation - from the same area, have a relative in the regiment then great. But what matters is your character, not any accidents of birth or geography. As Slim said, leadership is just plain you.

    So don't pretend to be anything you're not. Don't feign to have always had a deep Celtic soul if you want to join the SCOTS.

    And, most of all, don't hide your background, double-barrel your name, assiduously read The Chap for guidance rather than amusement and pretend to be Bertie Wooster in the desperate hope that a Cavalry regiment will accept you. They won't.

    You'll only end up in the 9 / 12th Lancers or a Gunner. I can't think which would be worse. And everyone, I mean everyone, will know.

    Everyone here knows someone from their CC who fits the above description, but few can think of one who was happy, or an effective subaltern.

    Anyway, ask around, but best of all visit, chat, network in person rather than online and you will discover soon how you might fit in best.

    Good luck

    Charlie
     
  9. In my dotage I seem to remember (I may of course have forgotten some of the detail) where the platoon commanders came from when I joined the regiment:

    2 x confirmed Londoners who had never visited the regimental recruiting area before joining;
    5 x schooled and universitied in the regimental recruiting area;
    2 x Africans (of various hues);
    1 x son of a regiment within the same division;

    Yes we had 10 platoons. A fairly balanced regiment of officers in other jobs: my first OC's father had been CO; my second OC had joined the Army as a Sapper OR. There were some brothers, a few sons of the regiment and some Londoners who had gone to university in the regimental recruiting area. Later there were some more brothers and cousins and the other extreme was one chap who had stayed after a party.

    So what? Charlie Cong is right.

    I think I've probably said this before but if the regiment doesn't want you, there is little point on pushing the issue and even less point in getting worked up by it. It is a shame that you might have committed to them without it being reciprocated, but there is little you can do about it.

    Think about what you want to do: are the people already doing it the types you would like to spend time with? Are you up to the challenge? Will you enjoy it? Will you contribute effectively?
     
  10. Brilliant post, Charlie Cong.

    Wish I'd have heard your advice, back in the day. :oops:

    You must be a top bloke.
     
  11. Cheesy...

    I wish I'd heard my own advice back in the day. Still can't remember why we let you in, though! :D

    Charlie
     
  12. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    No he isn't! :D
     
  13. What? Course I am!

    Clearly there are only two ways to solve this, either:

    a. An ARRSE poll

    b. Milling, followed by "Death By Um-Bongo" for the loser.

    My only worry is that The_Duke would throw the latter, so he can enjoy the consequences...

    :wink:

    Charlie
     
  14. That's what the missus says every day. :p

    Nor can I.