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No Christmas parcels for the troops!

#2
I for one would be happy to volunteer to help the post office or who ever to assist, perhaps BAFF, UKDA Legion could sort out numbers needed and then have collection points (Legion halls)......this is understandable but surely we could do something ?
 
#3
Sign of the times gents. Limited room on available aircraft. Remember it's bullets, beans and mail in that order. Unless anyone is volunteering to drive over there with an artic full of willy warmers from Wigan, I can't see the situation changing anytime soon.

P-T
 
#4
You've waited for the festive season to send a parcel ! been doing it all year I just send to appropriate family members to redistribute.
Last year I sent en-mass lots arrived late, thats why this time its a drip feed affort.

I want to sent something different this year as a treat , any suggestions ? (Both genders apply.)

WW
 
#5
dante242 said:
I for one would be happy to volunteer to help the post office or who ever to assist, perhaps BAFF, UKDA Legion could sort out numbers needed and then have collection points (Legion halls)......this is understandable but surely we could do something ?
BFPO London is currently looking for temporary helpers.....

Tel 0208 589 3288 for more info.
 
#6
This has been policy for some time and was certainly in place last year (dated quote below).

Continuation of the Royal Mail free packet service has been authorised for Op Telic, Op Herrick and HM Ships in Support. The continuation of the free service will operate from 08 Dec 07 until further notice. Family & friends in UK & BFPOs can send packets up to 2Kg in weight free of charge to Op Telic, Op Herrick and HM Ships in support only.

http://www.bfpo.mod.uk/optelic_opherrick_mail.htm

The sheer volume of unsolicited mail from well-meaning individuals has an adverse effect on getting mail from families and friends through. The system does not have the capacity to sort wheat from chaff and, pretty much, has to move it all (especially where 'clever' soldiers have circumvented whatever vetting system BFPO has in place by replacing the traditional 'A Soldier' with a real name). Would you rather have a Christmas parcel from your mum or another bundle of tesco shampoo, a comb and a bar of soap from 'Mrs Miggins of Hungerford'? (don't answer if your name is Cpl Miggins and you're from Hungerford).
 
#7
I anyone has a spare willy warmer then please feel free to send it out, think it's going to be a cold one. size small should cover it (well it will shrink in the cold) :cry:
 
#8
I hadn't really thought about this till this nudge. I've always felt I'd like to give a quid or two to various good causes on here, but I don't have a credit card and I tend to stay away from banking systems of any kind ( C. Europe here!) crinkly cash is so much more reliable. Before any of the senior financial gentlemen on here start suggesting they might be good channels for my generosity, might I get to the point?

At Xmas time...or round now, bugger it, considering the postal system.....were I to fill a little parcel with some goodies from C. Europe ( salami, drinkable shaving lotion etc, pole dancers!!!), how would I ensure it got somewhere where it would be distributed fairly, not knowing anyone on active service? This is not a wah and I certainly don't want to break OpSec regs. I suppose this is a bit like asking how to make snowballs in a bakery, but if there is a way, 50 notes spent here will make alot of recipients happy round the festive season in dry places.
 
#9
The official version on this is as follows:

Members of the public who send Christmas gifts to unnamed British Service personnel serving overseas are being urged this year to donate money to military charities instead.

Every Christmas the public donate gifts for those serving overseas, but the large number of packages can cause problems for friends and families sending cards and gifts to loved ones, and challenge operational effectiveness and safety.

The Ministry of Defence has introduced new controls on post after last year's festive period when, in the two months before Christmas, over 21,000 sacks of mail, weighing over 170 tonnes, were sent to Afghanistan alone. The majority of the mail was parcels generously donated to unnamed British Service personnel.

Such an enormous surge in the volume of post unintentionally puts a strain on the supply chain, diverting effort from making sure that essential combat supplies such as ammunition, medical supplies, food and equipment reach the front line. As much of this post must reach its final destination by helicopter, particularly in Afghanistan, extra flights mean extra danger for pilots and crews.

For these reasons, the Ministry of Defence, in partnership with British Forces Post Office, is limiting the free postal system only to friends and families, with mail only being accepted if to a named person.

Vice Admiral Peter Wilkinson, Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Personnel), said:

"The generosity and support of the British public has been outstanding and it means a huge amount to all those serving in our Armed Forces.

"When on operations, the receipt of news from home, a letter from your wife or children, is a huge boost to morale, but unfortunately, this can be delayed by the large volume of mail generously donated.

"Last Christmas, the mail created a significant challenge to our logistics chain in theatre, which must also focus on the supply of operational essentials such as ammunition, food and medical supplies.

"These controls mean we will continue to supply free post to the friends, family and loved ones of those serving on operations overseas, whilst ensuring our operational effectiveness is maintained.

"We are hugely grateful for all the public support for our servicemen and women, but because of the great response, we urge people to donate to alternative organisations to minimise the impact of Christmas mail surges."

Members of the public who wish to show their support, but who do not have someone specific to send a parcel to, are encouraged to donate to a range of charities including UK4U Thanks! - which provides a Christmas parcel for every serviceman and woman serving overseas on Christmas Day.

Alternatively The Royal British Legion, PoppyScotland, SSAFA, Army Benevolent Fund and Help for Heroes are among the organisations working to support our Service personnel.

For more information on how you can contribute, see:

http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/A...ersonnel/PublicSupportForOurServicePersonnel/

Mail arrangements for families and friends are unaffected. Packages up to 2kg may be sent free of charge at any time through the Royal Mail and BFPO to named personnel in eligible ships and theatres.

This was posted by the Ministry of Defence. You can find a copy at:
http://www.mod.uk/DefenceInternet/D...BestGiftForTroopsThisChristmasPublicUrged.htm
 
#10
shortarms said:
If anyone has a spare willy warmer then please feel free to send it out, think it's going to be a cold one. size small should cover it (well it will shrink in the cold) :cry:
I posted it yesterday, as well as another few e-blueys. I'd get the Irn Bru in now if I were you...... :wink:
 
#12
defenceheadquarters said:
Members of the public who wish to show their support, but who do not have someone specific to send a parcel to, are encouraged to donate to a range of charities including UK4U Thanks! - which provides a Christmas parcel for every serviceman and woman serving overseas on Christmas Day.
How do they get there then? Santa Claus?
 
#13
Some one needs to pull their thumb out their arrse and employ some seasonal workers, whether they are civvies or mil.

To say bombs and bullets or christmas parcels takes the system way back past WW1

Its not a complicated issue
 
#14
Pretty much a non story this has been going on for the last couple of christmas', we get round it by sending the parcels to the Senior bod and get them to pass them round.
 
#15
thegimp said:
Some one needs to pull their thumb out their arrse and employ some seasonal workers, whether they are civvies or mil.

To say bombs and bullets or christmas parcels takes the system way back past WW1

Its not a complicated issue
Keep in mind that everything going to the Afghan needs either a ground convoy through Pakistan or a DAS-equiped aircraft, of which we have few. If there was an established front line it would be different, but sadly it isn't.
 
#16
Christ GHQ, although there is some cold logic there, it is quite faulty. There isn't much more to say. I doubt whether that'll be on recruitment blab.
 
#17
Not good enough. Is this really the only solution?

I can understand the difficulty in getting parcels forward to the FOBs but why not get the ones for named soldiers to the FOB and hold the 'a soldier' ones at bastion. Then when the lads in FOBs rotate through bastion (possibly only a handful of times in a tour for some soldiers) they get handed a parcel of goodies at the helipad.

Tricam
 
#18
defenceheadquarters said:
Vice Admiral Peter Wilkinson, Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Personnel), said:
................
"Last Christmas, the mail created a significant challenge to our logistics chain in theatre, which must also focus on the supply of operational essentials such as ammunition, food and medical supplies.
Two problems I have with this is:

1. Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Personnel), - So not in logistics then!

2. Which must also focus on the supply of operational essentials such as ammunition, food and medical supplies, - so you are implying that the increase in mail will impact on the delivery on ammunition, food and medical supplies – bollox, we all know what gets priority and don’t expect anything else.

So the parcels will arrive a little late – so what, we never expect our mail to arrive in a reasonable time.

Telling people to stop sending parcels is ridiculous.
 

Bowmore_Assassin

MIA
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#19
Flying Felix said:
defenceheadquarters said:
Vice Admiral Peter Wilkinson, Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Personnel), said:
................
"Last Christmas, the mail created a significant challenge to our logistics chain in theatre, which must also focus on the supply of operational essentials such as ammunition, food and medical supplies.
Two problems I have with this is:

1. Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Personnel), - So not in logistics then!

2. Which must also focus on the supply of operational essentials such as ammunition, food and medical supplies, - so you are implying that the increase in mail will impact on the delivery on ammunition, food and medical supplies – bollox, we all know what gets priority and don’t expect anything else.

So the parcels will arrive a little late – so what, we never expect our mail to arrive in a reasonable time.

Telling people to stop sending parcels is ridiculous.
I am not in the defence supply chain area anymore but I saw this over four years in different staff jobs and was involved to a degree in the past. So this is my perspective and advice. Take it or leave it.

DCDS (Pers) is giving the response that has been put together over several months. I can assure you loggies have been involved in this business, particularly BFPO and Defence Supply Chain Operations and Movements organisation in Andover. The impact of mail could impact on delivery of other things if there was no prioritization. Last year the system was swamped with parcels (very generous of everyone) and it took a long time to clear them despite BFPO's and the supply chain personnel's best efforts. A major problem is many people leave it to the last minute - start sending them now and the problem is lessened.

The equation is simple: there is a limited number of aircraft and therefore, expecting many, many tons of extra mail to be sent via those aircraft just before Christmas and in time for Christmas is an unreasonable expectation. Other stores, including ammo, spares and food take priority. The difficulty is everyone does expect their parcels to arrive in time for Christmas but in terms of volume, if parcels based on last year is anything to go by, this is impossible. Simple solution: If you are sending a parcel to a loved one/relative, send early and tell them not to open it til Christmas Day. If you are one of the very generous public who want to support our troops (thank you and please keep supporting us), you would be helping by going through UK4U Thanks! (http://www.uk4u.org) which provides a Christmas parcel for every serviceman and woman serving overseas on Christmas Day.

For Thegimp. To quote you,

"Some one needs to pull their thumb out their arrse and employ some seasonal workers, whether they are civvies or mil." This already happens.

"To say bombs and bullets or christmas parcels takes the system way back past WW1." Not really getting this. What do you mean ?

"Its not a complicated issue." In principle you are right. The issue becomes a problem due to scale/numbers/volume. The expectation is that if a toms mum/girlfriend has sent a parcel, then said tom expects it to be there for Christmas - fair enough. Add in thousands of generously donated parcels with no priority on them all and it is a problem. Going through UK4U Thanks or RBL will help as they have been linked into resolving the issue.

I'll repeat the simple solution: Send early.
 
#20
We will see if this website gets read by the powers at be? Having just read the annoucement on the Intranet that the MOD are stopping unamed christmas boxes being sent out to Operational Theatres can only be written by someone sat in palatial surroundings in the UK and not in a Hostile environment where the only thing keeping them going is the charitable mail parcels exspecially over the festive period. If you think that people will alternatively donate what they would have spent on a small christmas box then you will be sadly mistaken! How will the girls and boys on deployment benefit from money being donated to army/navy or airforce charities unless they get sent home in a body bag!!!!!

The powers at be need to get a grip!
 

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