Main building? Wots that all about?

#1
Excuse my ignorance - but this is a serious question. I didnt believe it but have just been shown the NAO report and the refurbishment of main building cost us 746.1 Million quid! Thats more than the 500 million that Brown just 'awarded' us to refurbish the whole of our dire accomodation?? I suppose my real question is does anyone know what the b*****rs in main buliding actually do? PJHQ run the war , LAND provide all the bits to support the war, and Glasgow pay and administer us. So what does main building actually do? 746.1 million to accomodate a whole load of MOD civilians and a few 'suited' service people who cant even be bothered to put their uniform on? What DO they actually do?
 
#2
Simple. They make sure that any spare £746.1million isn't left lying around gathering dust.

Can't see the problem, myself.
 
#3
pongoglo said:
Excuse my ignorance - but this is a serious question. I didnt believe it but have just been shown the NAO report and the refurbishment of main building cost us 746.1 Million quid! Thats more than the 500 million that Brown just 'awarded' us to refurbish the whole of our dire accomodation?? I suppose my real question is does anyone know what the b*****rs in main buliding actually do? PJHQ run the war , LAND provide all the bits to support the war, and Glasgow pay and administer us. So what does main building actually do? 746.1 million to accomodate a whole load of MOD civilians and a few 'suited' service people who cant even be bothered to put their uniform on? What DO they actually do?
Who do you think actually decides how the money's going to be used? And do you think they give a damn about how soldiers are accomodated?

What else do they do? A question that's been bothering me for years - and I've worked there ..............
 
#4
pongoglo,
my thoughts exactly when I first returned a few weeks back, I'm glad I mainly work from home or another place,
Some of the offices are well appointed according to rank, but "others" seen to have jolly nice stuff that to my mind a "clerical " dont need .
I would be happy with a glossed paint wall ( to half height ) , a doors a bit of wood that fills a hole , dont need carpet ( oh yes you do, so you cant hear Boss creeping up to "micro manage" me ) at home its glorified shed FFS. Dont start me on dress standards.... One day I was asked if I was in uniform.
and as for "What DO they actually do?" well theres one guy who actualy goes round and........ oh thats me !

WW
 
#5
pongoglo said:
What DO they actually do?
if you want to get a feel for it, go down to Blockbuster and rent The Wizard of Oz. Fast forward to the bit with the witches lair with all the flying monkeys and you're 90% there. From there just imagine what the scene would look like with LCD monitors and nicer curtains.
 
#8
Time to burst a few bubbles here. Main Building is the main headquarters of the armed forces. It houses some 3500 people over half of whom are forces personnel. It is definitely not a case of a few token forces people and lots of fat civvys. The service personnel are the ones who call the shots, the civvies mostly work in the admin or support role.

The roles conducted there are mainly policy jobs - the whole of defence is an organisation which if you include reservists, CS and families is getting on for nearly half a million people. You also need the commitments teams to work out how to balance deployments, finance personnel to keep the budgets on track and other teams to monitor defence relations. There is a sizeable crisis management and intelligence presence too, plus the single service staffs and ministerial offices.

Its an ok environment to work in, but far better than it was before. The fact is that the money needed to be spent - before MOD was in over 10 buildings across london, now we're going down to 1 - Main building and that will be it.

As for the chairs - well yes if you bought one single aeron chair new it would cost a lot of money. When you buy nearly 4000 in one go, you're paying roughly 1/3rd of the cost. The chairs work and they're going to last a long time - i.e. the next 30 years. Of course we could go for cheaper chairs and spend more in total over the next 30 years replacing them several times over, but that would cost even more money.

I'd like to think that rational arguments would win the day here, but I'm resigned to the likelihood that this thread will descend into ill informed civvy bashing by people who don't want to let the truth get in the way of their nasty little predjudices.
 
#9
Solid gold toilet seats, virtual reality wraparound helmets, knight-rider cars and lots of stuff like that. CDS has one of them "beam me up Scotty" portal things so he doesn't have to drive in each day. The stationery budget alone would be able to fund a small African nation or lower Zimbabwe's inflation to 0%. The darkened rooms look like a cross between the TV programme 24 and the Bourne Identity and Matrix films, but with pot plants on the window ledges. The technology is awesome and they use GoogleEarth to stare down girls' tops. A bloke in the pub told me.
 
#10
Jim30 - What would have been the problem with making do with a polyprop each and having the money redirected into upgrading SFA. Knowing you're sat in a comfortable (no expense spared) chair whilst a Wife in Blandford is clocking up a phone bill trying to get a window repaired will make her all the happier. It leaves a very bitter taste in one's mouth that the higher echelons are seen to put themselves first in this instance whilst dreaming up ways of spinining the latest excuses to soldiers of why the pay is so crap. How can you credibly ask the Chancellor for more spends when he knows you squandered a whack of the last lot on office chairs ffs.

GOTW
 
#11
jim30 said:
Time to burst a few bubbles here. Main Building is the main headquarters of the armed forces. It houses some 3500 people over half of whom are forces personnel. It is definitely not a case of a few token forces people and lots of fat civvys. The service personnel are the ones who call the shots, the civvies mostly work in the admin or support role.

The roles conducted there are mainly policy jobs - the whole of defence is an organisation which if you include reservists, CS and families is getting on for nearly half a million people. You also need the commitments teams to work out how to balance deployments, finance personnel to keep the budgets on track and other teams to monitor defence relations. There is a sizeable crisis management and intelligence presence too, plus the single service staffs and ministerial offices.

Its an ok environment to work in, but far better than it was before. The fact is that the money needed to be spent - before MOD was in over 10 buildings across london, now we're going down to 1 - Main building and that will be it.

As for the chairs - well yes if you bought one single aeron chair new it would cost a lot of money. When you buy nearly 4000 in one go, you're paying roughly 1/3rd of the cost. The chairs work and they're going to last a long time - i.e. the next 30 years. Of course we could go for cheaper chairs and spend more in total over the next 30 years replacing them several times over, but that would cost even more money.

I'd like to think that rational arguments would win the day here, but I'm resigned to the likelihood that this thread will descend into ill informed civvy bashing by people who don't want to let the truth get in the way of their nasty little predjudices.
This is a soldiers forum and when more than a few soldiers are lacking vital equipment on operations and living in what can only be described as rat infested squalor at home, can you blame their annoyance at 746.1 million quid that they desperately need being spend on something which they don't need? NEED being the operative word.

Nasty little prejudices? Get the fuck down off your high horse.
 

oldbaldy

LE
Moderator
#12
Don't slag off Main Building.. Nearly the whole workforce spend their working day on here. :D
 
#13
Actually they used to let rough service types into the lower dungeon levels during TT and wars, but obviously the Civil servants wouldn't make eye contact with us scum
 
#14
oldbaldy wrote,
"Don't slag off Main Building.. Nearly the whole workforce spend their working day on here. "
It took me a while to realise that ARRSE was not an MOD resource ! and due to the fun police I can only ARRSE at home .
WW
 
#15
jim30 said:
Time to burst a few bubbles here. Main Building is the main headquarters of the armed forces. It houses some 3500 people over half of whom are forces personnel. It is definitely not a case of a few token forces people and lots of fat civvys. The service personnel are the ones who call the shots, the civvies mostly work in the admin or support role.

The roles conducted there are mainly policy jobs - the whole of defence is an organisation which if you include reservists, CS and families is getting on for nearly half a million people. You also need the commitments teams to work out how to balance deployments, finance personnel to keep the budgets on track and other teams to monitor defence relations. There is a sizeable crisis management and intelligence presence too, plus the single service staffs and ministerial offices.

Its an ok environment to work in, but far better than it was before. The fact is that the money needed to be spent - before MOD was in over 10 buildings across london, now we're going down to 1 - Main building and that will be it.

As for the chairs - well yes if you bought one single aeron chair new it would cost a lot of money. When you buy nearly 4000 in one go, you're paying roughly 1/3rd of the cost. The chairs work and they're going to last a long time - i.e. the next 30 years. Of course we could go for cheaper chairs and spend more in total over the next 30 years replacing them several times over, but that would cost even more money.

I'd like to think that rational arguments would win the day here, but I'm resigned to the likelihood that this thread will descend into ill informed civvy bashing by people who don't want to let the truth get in the way of their nasty little predjudices.
Jim,

Many thanks for the clarification and setting my mind at ease on the figures. I will now sleep easy at night knowing that the £213,171.43p cost per head is well spent and that we're getting the chairs cheap.

All,
Going off at a tangent, how much would extra support helicopters cost for our boys in Afghanistan? I note with interest that whilst we're spending the best part of a billion pounds on an office in london we're having to scrape around to get 6 Merlin's from the Dane's and soldiers allowances are being cut (MMA leaps to mind).

It also makes me incandescent whilst all this is going on, our glorious "leaders" at Westminster are sitting cosy on their index linked, bullet proof, bomb proof, chancellor proof pensions.

Rant Ends.

(Sorry - but it's been one of those weeks)
 
#16
Morning Boss !! my Boss has just rung me to point out it not main building but "The Ministry of Defence corporate headquarters " so thats alright then.
From the The wheelchair warrier technical assesment unit ( The garden shed )

WW
 
#17
£600,000 per aircraft to fit foam to the Herc, but the MoD only wanted to fit 5, unless you were special you didn't need the protection. Fuel protection for Nimrod-can't afford it fella. Not surprised with the pressure on budgets, especially with the cost of those chairs. Enhanced combat body armour for the invasion? Don't need it mate. Helos, to support troops on the ground in Afg-Nah, waste of time. Armoured vehicles? Blast proof accomodation 4 years on? Forget it. We will source the most expensive chairs we can find, buy 4000 of them and get a good deal. Armchair warriors need their comfort don't you know....

At a time of unremitting stretch and pressure on budgets this bloated revamp of MoD Main Building was a spectacular own goal. Jim 30, you should hang your head in shame if you cannot see that. Remind me again how many useless press officers work there?
 
#18
You can buy perfectly reasonable office chairs from PCWorld for less than £100. If they only lasted 3 years each, this would enable 30 years of use out of them (£1000 spent on the ones they have). They last longer than this and I would be surprised if ANY chair, £1000 or whatever, would last 30 years..........
 
#19
no chair would last 30years with those lardy buttock types in london, they would require load testing after first year.
 
#20
jim30 said:
The roles conducted there are mainly policy jobs - the whole of defence is an organisation which if you include reservists, CS and families is getting on for nearly half a million people. You also need the commitments teams to work out how to balance deployments, finance personnel to keep the budgets on track and other teams to monitor defence relations. There is a sizeable crisis management and intelligence presence too, plus the single service staffs and ministerial offices.
Because they've really done a good job at all of this hav'nt they ? Balance deployments ? Must take ages to think about sending a Bde from Iraq to Afghanistan with 12 months off between....Budgets on track ? When have the MOD ever kept a significant project budget under control ? Eurofighter ? BOWMAN ? FALCON budget going to plan ? God knows what the two carriers are going to really cost.
 

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