The oc told us today that VEs are being got rid of (becoming techs or VMs) as are RS! Looks like it's of to Arborfield for me!
Anyone got anymore info? just got told that tech storemen will take over the CQMS type jobs and CSM etc will become an unspec post.
Supose it's about time really though! ;)
From what I've heard, VE trade will be split between tech elec and VM. From RS, the CQMS / RQMS jobs will be taken over by Tech Stmn, who will now be called just "storeman" (as if there was ever a difference anyway). The training and CSM jobs will now be open to all trade groups.
Well, hearing that just made my weekend!  About time too!  Hopefully we will now stop bickering about a few less things and start concentrating on survival as a corps - unless you want to be a loggie that is?

No offence to RS or VE's, but hopefully this development means that with less trade streams, we can concentrate on the others and start manning them and recruiting them.  Nice to see that the two tier system is being levelled out - means that Artisans get more of a chance for promotion to WO1 and also potentially commissioning.  Something positive to come out of DEME(A)!
Not sure I agree with you there Spanner. The VEs probably had to go, as there were too few of them. As for the RS, I'm normally the last person to stand up for them, but I'm not so sure this is a great idea. We may have got rid of the specialisation, but we haven't got rid of any of the jobs they actually do. I will accept that the CQMS jobs can go to Tech Storemen, but what about the military instructor jobs and the Sergeant Major roles?

For example, take a platoon Cpl job at Pirbright. You are going to need to send a reasonably high calibre Cpl to a post like this, but how many of our good Cpls would want to take 2 years out when they are more likely to be aiming for tiffy? And how many of our artisan Sgts / Cpls are honestly likely to want to go and run SATT at SEME? We run the risk that we will end up sending second-rate guys to this sort of post as so few people will want to go as a first choice, and our reputation as a corps and hence recruiting will go down. We've seen the difference that good and bad DS at Sandhurst have on officer recruiting.

As for Sergeant Major jobs, although there are some artisans out there who could fill the slots, I can honestly say that within my company there is not one artisan who I would be prepared to swap for my current CSM. I simply don't have any artisans who are stage 4 / 5 range qualified, and an NBC instructor, and a counter surveillance instructor, etc, etc. I suppose we could pull artisans out of the technical stream and give them the chance to gain all these qualifications, but isn't that what the RS branch is? (My CSM is an ex-rec mech).

Maybe we would have done better had we approached the problem differently. If we want to allow artisans the chance to reach WO1, we should have done it by altering their career structure instead. There certainly are a number of problems with the RS branch. Too many are guys who possibly weren't doing that well in the infantry and chose to come here for easier promotion, but then who selected them? If we took more RS from inside the Corps, it would allow more people to aim for WO1 (RSM) if they aren't going tiffy, and might give us more RS with an understanding of our Corps' culture rather the infantry approach to the job that can sometimes annoy everyone else. Now we've got rid of RS the suggestion is that a lot of the posts will become E2. Assuming that Inf / RAC have got lots of spare people to give us, which I doubt, we will still find ourselves stuck with probably not very good infantrymen who now have absolutely no idea of our culture or any loyalty to us as a Corps. Hardly an improvement on where we're at now.

Like everyone else, I did enjoy the non-stop laughs for a week of putting job adverts in the CSM's in-tray, and nearly placed a classified ad in Sixth Sense for his pace stick. However, I think there will be far fewer laughs when we try telling our artisans that they're being taken away from trade for four months to go and do tactics courses.

Although I accept that fixing kit is our main job, don't forget that we do it on the battlefield. If our military skills are too poor to allow it to be done there, we may as well be replaced by a contractor.
All good points P-W!  Just actually pleased that REME have done something rather than bury heads in the sand like usual!

Yes, it's hard to get people who are 4-5 qualified, but these are not unique REME problems.  Most inf do not get these quals until they are knocking on the door of Senior Brecon at least, (or until their lords and masters see that they need the RAR(A) qual).  The thing is that the RLC and RE have been doing without the RS role, and seem to manage OK using their own indigenous manpower.

What we need now is a proper structure that allows our mob to get out there, get the quals, and not get knocked back by the G3 snobs who tend to allocate these course vacancies.  I don't think we will be replaced by civvies, unless DEME(A) lets us down.  Trouble is, that HQ seems to spend most of its time navel gazing, rather than attempting to fight our corner.... but thats another story!
Personally, I couldn't be happier that the failed infantry and sad wannabes are getting binned from the corps - it's the VEs I feel for.  At least they have been something other than an embarrassment to REME whenever speaking to any real infanteer!  On a slightly more serious note, it's to be hoped that ther will be a smooth transition for both Trade groups... VEs to VM and  girly techs, and RS to the main gate (barrierup, barrier down). ;D
Good luck to the Sparky's, as at least you have a chance of progressing further than Sgt (which you deserve).   To the other lot - byeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!! ;D ;D
If everyone in the Corps seems so keen to do away with the RS trade, then does anyone have any resoned ideas as to who (either from in the Corps or not) should replace them? The RS role, especially in training establishments, is an anomaly within the REME, but is not one that can be easily taken over by any of the remaining trade groups. There can only be a handful of tradesmen within the Corps that will be prepared to take on the job of an RS Cpl, when this means time out of trade and all the associated career pitfalls that come with it. I know that most trades have their eyes primarily on the WO1 and WO2 slots that will become available when the RS role goes, but please don't forget that the other posts will also require filling, and not just by bitter, passed over full screws looking for time out of trade. Remember, the first impression recruits get of the Corps and Army as a whole, will be of an RS Cpl at an ATR, so lets make sure we get the best men for the job, which, in my view, are the current crop of RS.

PS As for the RLC managing perfectly well since chopping their equivalent of the RS role - they're not. Their standard of instructors from trades are nowhere near the professional stadards of either the RS or MTI (RLC equivalent), which is partly the reason that so much dross is coming out of Phase 1 training badged RLC. Let's not go down the same route.
Sorry crow, but you have been unfortunately let down by a crop of much older RS.  It is entirely their fault that their role is not being subsumed, and yes, all your points are valid ones.  

However, in the Royal Engineers, they still manage to carry out training for a combat role, using their own instructors who are dual traded.  This is the model that I presume we will be copying - or I hope we will.  They manage to carry out very good training for their soldiers and officers, without a role specific trainer.

As for the training regiment posts, it would seem better to have a REME tradesman who is selected to go there because he/she is the best available, not someone who is a passed over disgruntled Cpl!  It's all about ethos, image and selecting the right people to do the job!


Picture the scene post change all ex sparkies now wobs or fitters (Dont moan you just fit stuff)  Tiffies Office - Tiff "Ah Cpl Bloggs  just posted in VM B I see, weren't you a VE once?"  Sparkie thinking "F***off you tiffy wa*ker" but saying "yes twas awhile ago I dabbled in the black art of eletrickery". Tif " right the B sqn fitter section for you and collect your VE's toolbox from the G1098"    YEARS ROLL BY@........@   Tiffies Office - Tiff "Ah Cpl Bloggs just posted in VM B I see, weren't you a VE once?"  Cpl Bloggs thinking "F***off your still a tiffy wa*ker" but saying "No that was my Dad I am 100% VM" Tif " WHAT! you mean there are no more ex VE's in the system!!!!!  oh my giddy aunt DEME(A) your forebearers have cast great troubles amongst us and rid us of the small but elite group of magical tradesmen once called VE's, What are we to do?"  DEME (A) thinking "F***off you artificer masturbator" but saying "Have no fear your VM's are all trained to carry out the work of the once god like VE's" Tif (as he removes his tongue so as to speak) " But messiah we are but fitters and haven't a f***in clue about things which we cannot see"  DEME(A) " Do not fear wait until the smoke flows from the tube and then on catching it, force it back into the tube with the aid of a FLUKE then apply black tape aquired from the boxing ring ropes or the notice board and the power shall once again flow"  Tif " but what if that fails master", "my fitters lack the skill and co-ordination to operate the mighty FLUKE competently and seem to cause more damage when wielding it"  DEME(A) " CRB the F**ker and let our old VE's fix it".................... And here endeth the lesson            What Goes Around Comes Around


Prediction - VE/Automotive Technician posts resurected in 2015
Is this not another case of 'would the last one to leave please turn out the lights'?...The military training of the corps should remain firmly in the hands of the professionals (the RS) and augmented by suitably qualified (and available) tradesmen.  Blanket stacking should be handed over to the Tech Storeman roll and all CSM and RSM posts should be made available to all members of the Corps, irrespective of trade.  As for the overworked and undervalued VE's.....sorry chaps, if you can wait for about 10 yrs the Corps will realise the huge cock up it has made and reinstate you all...Just like the VM (Undecided)..
[quote) The military training of the corps should remain firmly in the hands of the professionals (the RS)

The trouble is the majority of the ex infanteers coming into our corps don't have a clue about how REME operate, what our equipments are and what their roles are.

All they want to do is take us for drill and bill us for losing a piece of webbing. All other corps seen to manage to double hat their tradesmen to train their troops and do their job, why can't REME?

Well we can and we will.

Bye bye RS.
'don't have a clue about how REME operate, what our equipments are and what their roles are'

If we apply this criteria to rid the Corps of all 'unwanted' baggage then surely this must apply to 70% of Tiffies, 80% of Officers and 100% of Tels Techs..I admit that, as with all 'trade' groups, there are bad as well as good representatives.   ;)
The powers that be, did away with VE's before and then brought them back. VE's will return.

Yes I had to retrade when I thought about going tiffy and while on course, the instructors were not supprised that I could find and repair electrical faults quicker than the VM's on the course.

I enjoyed working in both trades and am not putting the trade of VM down in anyway. But, back in the 90's a VM Cpl, put 18 Foden Recovery Vehicles of the road due to mucking about with the electrics. It took months to find out that he had dismantled a proximity switch and then wired it up wrong. He was posted to NI and promted on posting :eek:
Himmelblau, all you have done is highlight the fact that some VMs need more experience on electrics.  Even Armourers are trained in electrickery, they just don't practice it at the moment because VEs are there.  
I know this because I did an armourers course and since doing it I have made a point of doing as much electrics as poss - and more importantly making the VMs and Armrs that worked for me do it too.  
The result is VMs that can find and fix electrical faults - it ain't rocket science. :mad:
Well said and done Nige. :)
There may be a bit of Artisan in your core after all.  8)
Thanks for the reply Nige,

Perhaps it is a good idea that the trade of VE is being done away with, as this will give VE's the chance to retrade as VM's or Tech's and give them a chance of higher promotion prospects.

I left the Corps in 93, so maybe I should have commented on all the equipment we were expected to work on and not focus mainly on repairs to vehicles.

Reading the threads, has reminded me of the fears I had back in the early 90's regarding the way the army was going in general. I feel for those still serving and the shortfall in manpower.

My main point, was that the MoD had tried doing away with VE's before but found a need to bring them back. I have an MSN Group called REME Past & Present and many of the old VM's are proud to have a star* next to their trade designation. But, even they were glad to see the VE's brought back and acknowledged the need for us. Or perhaps the Control Equipment Techs were glad to off load some of there workload back to the VE's.

I am more proud of serving in the REME than the RM's and I would hate to see the Corps disbanded and amalgamated back into other Corps that we were formed from, not that many of them still exist.
In my 12yrs VE's were as rare as rocking horse poop.I only ever came across one serving at a base (stn)wksp in Libya.In my experience all veh electrics was covered by the VM.s,with the odd washing machine thrown in as well.Sometimes the odd ECE would help out if you caught them between tea breaks. 8)
Can I just say that the Sparky Cpl we had at my last unit was tops. He would do anything to help any trade, and got deservedly promoted on posting. Like I say Top Bloke. Nice one Peds  ;)
just like to get my oar in on this one!! Just makes you think who is next with all the talk going around VMs and recy mechs next, no thank you as i once heard a big scottsman say oil thats for the grubby virmin you my son mud and shit thats where you earn your cash. Getting to my point every trade has its identity and if you strip that then you start to strip the reme (officers what do they know) ;D ;D  
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