MOD Voice mail


‘Thank you for calling the British Army. I’m sorry, but all of our units are out at the moment, or are otherwise engaged. Please leave a message with your country, name of organisation, the region, the specific crisis, and a number at which we can call you. As soon as we have sorted out the Balkans, Iraq, Northern Ireland, the Millennium Bug, marching up and down bits of tarmac in London and compulsory Equal Opportunities training, we will return your call.’

‘Please speak after the tone, or if you require more options, please listen to the following numbers:’

‘If your crisis is small, and close to the sea, press 1 for the Royal Marines.’

‘If your concern is distant, with a tropical climate and good hotels, and can be solved by 1 or 2 low risk bombing runs, please press ‘Hash’ for the Royal Air Force. Please note this service is not available after 1630 hrs, or at weekends.’

‘If your enquiry concerns a situation which can be resolved by a bit of grey funnel, bunting, flags and a really good marching band, please write, well in advance, to the First Sea Lord, The Admiralty, Whitehall.’

‘If your enquiry is not urgent, please press 2 for the Allied Rapid Reaction Corps.’

‘If you are in real, hot trouble please press 3, and your call will be routed to Sandline International.’

‘If you require the services of the SAS, you’ll know which number to press’

‘If you are interested in joining the Army and wish to be shouted at, paid little, have premature arthritis, put your wife and family in a condemned hut miles from civilisation, and are prepared to work your ******** off daily, risking your life, in all weathers and terrains, both day and night, whilst watching the Treasury eroding your original terms and conditions of service, then please stay on the line. Your call will shortly be connected to a bitter passed-over Recruiting Sergeant in a grotty shop down by the railway station.’

‘Have a pleasant day, and thank you again for trying to contact the British Army.’


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