Officers in the Army

Discussion in 'Officers' started by Gallagher, Feb 19, 2007.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. Hey,
    After a leadership training weekend in Ballykinler I have considered seriously the prospect of entering the army as an infantry officer when I complete University which is a big deal as I have been looking to join the RAF as a pilot for the last 6 years. I have a few question that I hope you could answer.

    1. The regiments that I would be interested in would be the Royal Irish, Irish Guards or Army Air Corp. What sort of regard do the rest of the army have on the RIR.

    2. If I serve an 18yr commission what sort of career prospects could I enjoy as an infantry officer after.

    3. Could I swap over after around 6-9 years as an infantrymen to a pilot.

  2. Gally,

    Have a good read of the websites first...

    But for what its worth.

    Royal Irish - proper infantrymen with a solid reputation, not known for their shyness or lack of fighting ability. Go and visit them and decide for yourself.

    Irish Guards - similiar to the above. Love marching up and down outside palaces.

    Army Air Corps - proper pilots.

    You can choose to do a flying tour with them from either of the above Regiments or join them direct. See their website, go and visit.

  3. Too long. As a graduate you will already be long in the tooth as far as the AAC is concerned. They will want to be seeing your papers at the 25-26 year old point to get a decent return of service.
  4. Thanks for the quick replies guys.

    One question which I forgot to ask was as an infantry officer you obviously get involved with fighting with your men but upto what rank. The reason for this question is that I do not want to be miles from the battle and my men after only 5 years of getting a commission. So are you beside your men when your a captain or major.
  5. There is no easy answer to that last question, as every conflict situation differs. If I were you however, I would picture a sliding scale; The higher that you go, the less chance of slipping a bayonet between your teeth.
  6. I was still getting filled in by my soldiers even as a major. In fact it´s one of the reasons that I left, along with the bedwetting and obsessive hat wearing.

    Make sure you book an early call, get your orderley to bring you a nice cuppa, and ffs, don´t miss the transport.

    (yes, I know, he deserves a sensible answer to a sensible question, but its late and I couldn´t resist.) The sensible answer is that there are gritty officers at every level, just as there are wet blankets. Get as involved as you want. That´s why I was a tp comd and flt comd for 9 years and never did sqn 2ic or RHQ. The down side of that is that after 20 years, I realised that I wasn´t going to make CGS so I got out.

    If you´re still frustrated and looking for action after 5 years, just go to some of the tastier pubs in Saaf Lahnden and look for a fight - it won´t take long.

    By the way, anyone out there have any views on how long it takes to get bored of being shot at and being intimately responsible for your soldiers´lives on a day to day basis? How many serious op tours (like Afghanistan in 2006) would one want to do before the option of shining the arrse looks more attractive? I don´t have a whole heap of operational experience compared to what´s going on now and frankly, I used to sh1t myself after 10 minutes in the butts.
  7. I forgot to mention, I did my flying tour in years 6 - 9. I was ok because I had already done JDSC and passed SST (anyone remeber that?). I don´t know how today´s career structure would tolerate this. My downfall was doing SO3 Coconuts in Belize instead of at a sensible grown up armoured brigade.
  8. Hey Gallagher,

    I went on that exact leadership weekend only a year ago, I assume you are going to the United Kingdom Land Forces Command/Cadet Leadership Course (CLC)?

    It is an excellent course and has inspried me to join up, well I say inspired I mean passionate, not fully decided yet though.

    PM me and we can have a wee convo, I'm about you age and have prob met you in some capicity or another, being a cadet as you are (I think you are?).

    RIR- Havn't been on a Fam visit, but I know a good few officers from there and have met the recrutiing officer of RIR, very decent guy.

    Irish guards- I think you may be getting confused the the Irish prefix, mostly they are englishmen (correct me if I'm wrong), but still a good guards regiment, not one I'd go for, because I don't like the ceremonial side, its just not my cup of tea.

    AAC- want to visit them though even the Fam visit selection is highly competitive, though all in all a VERY good regiement for action and skills.

    In all regard the RIR is viewed very highly by the rest of the armed forces. Look in the infantry forum and find the video about the Irish in Afghanistan- the comments show the repsect. The are well respected and well used and experience in combat, that's an appeal for me, they seem pretty informal aswell.

    I say all this with relatively little first hand experiecne of the RIR- but with the litte knowledge I do have.

    By all accounts I believe that 18 year commissions aren't offered outright anymore. You do 3 years Short Service then apply for an Intermediate, then if you are GREAT you get the Full commission or long service. Again correct me if I'm wrong?

    I don't know how easy it is for an infantry man to become a pilot after a few years. I believe it is possible to join a regiement then be attached, almost immediately to another regiment, following combat arm training?

    All in all its about going to Sandhurst, getting a commission and whist there choosing what regeiemtn you want to join, you'll get a much more realistic view, in my opinion, after having joined the army.

    Contact the NI carreers officer (don't want to mention his name on here for obvious reasons but the number is in the yellow pages). The AFCO will give you facts that are in the most part undisputed about your choices and regiements.

    Go on Fam visits, talk to DS at the CLC, get as much info as possible. Good luck, PM me for a wee chat if you want aswell!

    All the best

  9. Sorry to be pedantic, but...

    RIR - Royal Irish Rifles, who in 1922 became...
    RUR - Royal Ulster Rifles

    After amalgamation...

    R IRISH - Royal Irish Rangers and later Royal Irish Regiment.

    So I suppose you all mean R IRISH
  10. UKLF? I did that course over a decade ago!

  11. I'm actually not a cadet, the army contacted our school to arrange candidates.

    What do you mean when you say you start of with a 3 year commission then apply for an intermidiate. Sounds a bit daunting if I could be out of a job after 3 years.

    Anyone got an answer on what sort of career prospects an infantry officer with a history degree could attain.

  12. in_the_cheapseats

    in_the_cheapseats LE Moderator

    If you going infantry, what kind of degree doesn't really matter. It is proof that you have a brain that is wanted.

    What does matter is that you use your ability to learn the military knowledge you will be exposed to at RMAS and then apply it appropriately to the real life situations you will meet as a Inf offr.
  13. A few points Gallagher:

    1st Battalion Royal Irish Regiment; a fine bunch of lads having worked with them in NI. Lots of excellent recent operational experience in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Read Col Tim Collins's book to get an idea of what they did in Iraq.

    1st Battalion Irish Guards; also a cracking bunch. Not all their officers are English. They have several who are born and brought up in Ireland, both South and North. The vast majority of others have v strong family connections with Ireland. The blokes are cracking as well.

    AAC; as someone said - proper pilots. You can either join them direct or do a flying tour attached with them, probably after about 3 yrs with whichever Battalion you join.

    With regards to Commissioning; one year at Sandhurst, after which you will hold a Short Service Commission (which lasts for 3 yrs). This can be extended in yearly increments up to the (I think) 7 yr point and is very easily done. Alternatively, you can apply for conversion to an Intermediate Regular Commission (IRC), which will take you to your 16 year point/ Immediate Pension Point. This is also very easily done and (generally) only wasters don't get accepted. If you have a modicum of ability you will get accepted.

    As regards the action; I reckon that being an Infantry officer is amongst the best jobs. Army Pilots are slightly divorced from the action (with the obvious exception of Apache pilots who are proving to be worth their weight in gold). As an Infantry officer you can expect to do a year or 2 as a Rifle Platoon Commander - right in the thick of it. People will often then go off to a training depot as an Instructor, or be a Company 2IC, or command Mortars, Recce or Anti-Tank Platoons, all great jobs. But Company Commanders (Majors) are also in the thick of it on ops; several have recently been awarded MCs etc and any Company Commander on the ground goes through exactly the same as his blokes.

    There are of course staff jobs to be filled, but these do not have to be dull. Some are poor, some are pretty hard core.

    So, a long winded answer, but I hope it helps. Read the websites and get visiting the Regts. The most important thing is to get on with the people that you will be living and working with.

    Good luck!
  14. There are a fair proportion of Northern and Southern Irishmen in the Micks, not to mention those of Irish extraction. Also, I believe that there is something of a tradition amongst Catholic officers with Guardee inclinations to opt for the Micks.

    Don't forget to mention...the Royal Inniskilling Fusiliers (they, the Royal Ulster Rifles and Royal Irish Fusiliers became the Royal Irish Rangers in 1968, which together with the UDR came to form the Royal Irish Regiment in 1992).
  15. Some cracking replies so thanks. I actually have read the Tim Collins book.

    Anyone got an answer for career prospects outside of army?