It has been a lifetime since I last had a mess dinner and believe me when I say, that I really, really miss them. Are they still the fun filled nights that they used to be or has political correctness raised its ugly head again.

Have the civilian contractors had any influence in the way dinners are held or is Tara still firmly in control?  Is there still a PEC or has that been contracted out as well.
I was PEC for two terms  at the Army Air Corps Mess at Middle Wallop and boy did I enjoy that!

Your comments are eagerly awaited........Ken
Well Ken,
They aint what they used to be  :-/.  The takeover by NSS certainly has cut into the overall enjoyment of yer average dinner night what with every penny, euro etc having to be scrimped to avoid remortgaging your house to attend.  I cant speak army wide but I have noticed an increased lack of respect for mess traditions creeping in with younger mess members. Lastly if the mess is a large multi unit mess like Lisburn or Bruggen, the Station dinner nights and functions are better avoided unless you happen to be the presiding member or VIP guest, otherwise get used to cold food and being thirsty.
Dont get me wrong, you can still enjoy yourself in the mess, its all a question of the company you keep and what you expect.  In short - bring back the old self-run mess and watch the standards creep back in ;)


What a da**ed shame!  The new breed of SNCO seems to be totally devoid of mess loyalty and tradition. Of course the mess being run by ignoramuses does not help. Is it mandatory that the Mess has to be run by these people?  Surely the Senior Officer guests must see the difference or at least Tara should be briefing the Guest over a glass of port!

Maybe there should be a total boycott of the Messes and maybe the powers to be will get the message.(I can say this because I am no longer serving so I am not inciting mutiny!!)

Bring back the Mess of the sixties/seventies and eighties!!!!


To be quite honest with you there are only 1 type of good events in the mess...those that the wives are not allowed to attend.

once a month after a mess meeting where you can tell the Rq he is complete tosser and that because he has a title it does not earn respect.

But for the other types of do's

look at the facts, I personnally have a much better clue on how I want to spend my weekends without having to be forced to spend it with foul mouthed wives and their ignorant infantry husbands becuase Kareoke on a Sat night sounds like fun to them!!!

I want to go shagging the local lasses from my home town, and not end up getting into a conversation with a thick grunt becuase the only thing he can talk about without losing the plot is work.

Sorry had to get that off my chest and sorry for the typos, but cant be bothered to go back and amend the mistakes.
At least you lot can have a few drinks and actually undersand the jargon of the mess. Us lot get trotted out, can't go to the loo during the dinners, unless we are obviously pregnant, usually feel very uncomfortable and then don't understand very much of the speeches and banter because it all circles around  what you guys actually do. My husband can't usually explain what it's all about as he is usually sat across from me, so the whole table will hear the character assasination that he is trying to explain!

Wouldn't be so bad if we could just sit there and get quietly very drunk, but we still have to make conversation with other confused guests!
I want to go shagging the local lasses from my home town, and not end up getting into a conversation with a thick grunt becuase the only thing he can talk about without losing the plot is work.
So why did you join the army in the first place? You could have stayed in your hometown and got a job doing something else. ::)
We are a small Sgts Mess of 35 members and still have a great time during dinner nights. Because we are all from different cap badges and units the banter is excellent. Not all of us takes the mess life too seriously.
All it takes is a PMC or PEC with a bit of imagination.

We had an good stag mess do last wednesday, although the entertainment was poor, but we told the PMC who booked it and the lesson has been learnt.

We are all mess members and all of us have a say and a vote.

All the best


It wasn't me but I'll help clean it up
How do you get vomit out of taffetta?????

Not a joke!!!
Lippy - I think warm water and a bit of washing up liquid has done the trick.  I hadn't noticed the spew until I had to sew the foot long rip up last night.  But I ain't getting a new one until this one has COMPLETELY fallen apart.

Bit like my fellas really!!!!

Ready when you are Andy!
:mad:The good old days are sadly gone.But what do expect from a politically correct "Government",who have to be seen to appease everybody,apart from people born here.You have only to look at the sad state of the boys' gear in the Gulf to realise what Blair and co. think of the Armed Forces.I'm glad Iwas in during the good years.
we have 2 sad gits in our mess who put a proposal that the mess only holds 2 functions a year, tossers, takes years to get into the mess, a fortune for your mess dress, cheap drinks, great food, get waited on, if they dont like what comes with the mess they could always ask to revert to cpls :x :x
Having been in the mess for merely 2 years, I can't say what messes were like in the days before Sodexho, or whatever civvie firm runs your mess. The problem with them is that they charge the earth to work after midnight (which is fair enough if you aren't 'in' and don't get the 'x factor'). So if the dinner part of your function goes beyond midnight, it really ups the cost of that function.

Other than that, I enjoy mess doos - good food, cheap drink, the odd jape and a good laugh. As for the idea of completely boycotting the mess, I fear that would end up in us losing the mess entirely, an idea which would doubtless appeal to the bean counters in the exchequer.

It would seem that the amount of enjoyment to be had out of your mess is subject purely to which mess (unit wise) you are in and, for the Corps who have loads of them, how that mess is run by the razzer. If you ask me, long may they last!
the seniors mess is second to none, lets get in and give it our full support you lilly livered tossers, (you know who you are), 2 mess functions a year??? you dont deserve those tapes, theres a few full screws in my unit who would gladly take your place.
Thinking on it Theatreman, when was the last time we had a proper Regimental Dinner, I know that most of the units been away (Op Telic etc), but I cant remember one for at least 9 months. Or have I been a sleep.
you must have blinked and missed it, 1 about a month ago, mainly gob docs and sigs, only about 4 of us
I get a bit peed off with spending over £600 nicker for a smart drinking tracksuit and then having to wear 'smart but casual' to every do or 'fancy dress'. Why? Is it because the RSM has less medals than the Vice chap? No, I must insist that at a Sgts Mess Do, we wear Sgts mess kit. Me Doris feels more special buying a new bit of kit than a pair of flip flops and the same old sarong. Vote it in, my arse!
Lord Flasheart said:
I must insist that at a Sgts Mess Do, we wear Sgts mess kit.
I totally agree
Is the lack of Mess life a UK thing? Methinks probably yes. Our Messes (Officers and Seniors) are both hives of activity. Notwithstanding RSMs and COs being precious about their Messes it also helps having shared facilities. The subbies in particular have a ball. as for the slow down of activity due to TELIC...we had Mess dinners on tour! C'mon down!

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