If the MOD see fit to have an organisation of "Militia" ready to fill in gaps in manpower etc, then who am I to argue.
Though it feels like a waste of time when you're watching hexi-telly in an OP near farm 13, the people you're with, and feeling like you do a worthwhile job, that sets you apart from the rest of Civ Div makes up for it.
PTP (and MG Gunner...whose original post I didn't see) - go and see the thread on the Current Affairs board...there is the start of a debate there about the structure and role of the TA....
It might be one thing to feel as if you are doing a worthwhile job - but perhaps you should ask yourself the question whether you really are. That is NOT a personal criticism of you, or anyone else in the TA; just a suggestion that some honest self-aware thought might be in order in some parts of the organisation. I may be wrong - but I suspect that some bits of the TA have been given roles for which they will never be fit. Is that a good use of resources....resources that could be redeployed to units that do make sense....
My position, is slightly different to yours, in that I sacrificed a career for the honour of the Wedgeiment, but that's another story.
When I was on recruit training, I was also working in Germany,which meant having to leave Gutersloh early doors friday morning, to be at the TAC for the off on Friday night.
Surprisingly enough, the waste of space arschloch officer in charge of recruits at the time, questiioned my motivation for being in. My motivation was a family history in the regiment, but I think that wound him up even more. I was subjected to a shedload of abuse, by him and his gang of "old style" recruit trainers,including being made to stand to attention in the rain for an hour and a half, in full CeFO with bergan on, for the crime of being late for an RV at Dixies corner, having driven from germany the previous night.
I felt like giving up a lot of times, but I just thought "You'll never fcuking beat me you fat drongo".
Getting the budgie, and reading my course report were among the prodest moments of my life, but not quite as wonderful as seeing the look on the TNUC's face, when I passed into the Company proper.
That's the background....
The TA , is full of hurry up and wait. Promotion and advancement are difficult, especially since SDR, and a lack of courses, unless you want to do JNCO cadre, Junior and Senior Brecon, or whatever your unit equivalent is.
You just have to hang in there, unless you feel, that your original choice is not for you. Don't be afraid to jump ship, if you feel you'd fit in better elsewhere. Conversely, don't be afraid to push yourself forward. I'm suffering from a lack of self-confidence in my military life right now, and it's hacking me off, because I need to get a grip.
Yes, sometimes it feels like Groundhog day, a lot of the time it feels unfair, but you must persevere. Look at the options open to you. Have you done JNCO's yet? Push yourself forward, because in my experience, especially since SDR, no other bugger is going to do it 4 you. Don't give up, you may be better than you believe, don't do as I do disillusioned, etc etc etc
Best of luck, if you want to chat in depth, PM me off board, I'll see what I can advise
If the cost of call up for me puts me outside the govt.s range of acceptable costing then shouldn't I be leaving?
Willing to volunteer but reference mortgage etc I need to be met half way here and if this is still outside the governments banding then I must be wasting my time and would like my weekends back now please.
Roughly my mortgage is twice my Mil salary so we're looking at 2.5 - 3 x my mil salary to get me out on the ground. As I've said - I suspect I'm wasting my time.
I have to say that joining the TA was one of the best things I ever did. I have made many great new friends, get a welcome break away from work and the family, learn skills I could never otherwise do (from trade courses to skills to even giving presentations), and keep very fit.
Added to this much of my unit has already been mobilised in the last year and no doubt many more of us are yet to. I think that makes us a very useful addition to the national defence overall.
Having said that I had problems initially during the CMS phase because the ex reg training staff (PSIs) and some of the SNCOs that had been in a while didn't give a toss. In fact most dissppointed with PSIs' attitudes generally. Once through it though it has been onwards and upwards.
As mentioned above I would stick with one of the 'trade based' units though as opposed to infantry
....and yes I earn far more than my Mil salary and just had to realise that I had to deal with it under mobilisation or leave. I think that is reasonable.
it would seem to me that you lot really do need to get a decent set of PSI's ffs
i cant honestly fathom how a SNCO sent from a regular unit to train the TA could give anything less than 100% in the job, i love it to bits and enjoy working wit hthe TA guys i administer, if there training is worthwhile and rewarding and they go away smiling and having learnt something then my job is done and i am chuffed to bits.
Sadly i know it isnt the case and more often than not these days people tend to get lazy in their jobs, but having never paid for a Beer in my Troop bar in 2 years of being a PSI i imagine i am doing something right
It really is a shame that you have landed PSI's that arent throwing themselves int othe job 100% i am sure if they pulled their fingers out and tried to get rid of the "me me me " attitude they would actually find it rewarding and realise they got paid for doing their job and not keeping their feet on the desk.
Dont lose faith in it guys, the TA for the most part do a more important job in the grand scheme of things than some of you obviously realise.
Given that several PSIs have (not doubt with reason) been criticised of late, just felt the need to point out that I've never had any major probs in that area. Our PSI left recently - on promotion - and we're all confident that the new PSI will maintain the same standards of professionalism and enthusiasm.
Any would be TA recruit reading these posts shouldn't allow the (not huge) possibility of an indifferent PSI to put him/her off.
Any would be PSI reading this should remember that we're not stupid, we know when someone doesn't give a damn, but we really do appreciate the efforts made by a genuinely enthusiastic PSI. (See LP's post re mothballing his wallet )
having watched this post develop i am very pissed of 1.with the arabs(arrogant regular army bastards) and 2.with the powers that be with in the TA and MOD who really have allowed this to develop.
ARABS first with the retention crisis in the army who the hell do you think you are gobbing of at the people who stop you doing back to back Bosnia/Kosovo/Afganistan tours a third of troops in thease theaters are TA/Reserves. You complain about how they aren't well trained well remember you train for 11 months of the year they train for 30days maximum. You treat us as second class citizens well your average TA soldier is more inteligent than you better motivated and more eficient than you. Why is he better motivated and more efficient he has to sort out his training time and fit it in round his work and his family comitments(yes we have those to). You simply role into work at the time your told with the kit your told to be in and get on the truck. No worrying about getting time of work or going in on monday after a weekend training and not getting additional days off. Whilst the regulars moan and gurn if they're asked to work at weekends.
As for the powers that be where is the extra resources promisied with SDR and options for change all i've seen is cuts in MTD'S & training resources. Thirty MTD'S is ridiculous yes any more and we become part time employees with rights. You are expecting us to do more to pull the regular army out of the smelly stuff with alot less than is required.
AS to a list of 10 units that are of use to the ARMY:
1: Army medical services 2/3 of the total strength is TA.
2. Royal Logistic Corps
3. Royal Signals
4. N.B.C elements of Yeomanry
6.Royal Military Police
9.watch keepers pool
10.media ops pool
This isn't really about ARABS - though they exist. In a way I share exactly your sentiments. In other words, if your allowance is only 35 days a year (or whatever) then how can the TA ever hope to come up to scratch ? In my book, it can't. Who knows if there is going to be a war in the Gulf - but if there is, what are the odds on the time between mobilisation and the war being longer than the readiness level of most of the TA ? Slim I would think.
So what IS the point ? Aren't most of you wasting your time, if you are in units with very low readiness and not enough training ? I actually think your list is a very good stab (no pun intended) at what is worthwhile; I would have written a similar list - though the watchkeepers and especially the media ops I would put closer to the top of the list since te latter are specialists you need a lot of occasionally and who make sense to be civilian experts brought in from outside. I think I would add the civil affairs people high on that list too.
Sack the rest; they're a waste of money. Inf ? Artillery ? They will NEVER be used. If you have to keep any, keep a small increment of Inf to backfill with FTRS.
Perhaps the current exercise will cause some people in both the Regular Army and TA to take an honest look at what genuinely is useful. Forget cap-badges and history, and structure the organisation so the little jam there is isn't spread thin on regiments with roles that really hark back to the cold war - so the units that do make the grade - the ones on your list Nurse - are properly supported.
The plans for the TA at options for change and SDR where specifically about making the T.A. a useable asset to the regular army the emphesis in the original planning was TA to take on a more logistic and support element role. But politicans intervened to 'save' local infantry and yeomanry units. Most of the Royal artillery is now provide inividual reinforcements. 103 re-roled to light gun last year giving the army a 3rd light gun regt(although i doubt it'd be used as such). The infantry are ment to be guard force for supply areas hospitals etc bt they still beleive they are a front line force.
But the real problem is lack of training and resources the TA need to go back to the MTD levels that existed when I first joined like 100+ days. Units need to be properley equipped. We need access to ranges and trianing areas not helped by block booking by the regulars who know they won't A. use it or B. use it at weekends. The TA also has to loose the chip on its shoulder and realise that in some areas we are as good as the regulars and in some areas better but also remember we in many areas we are not so good. And the regulars need to help us to improve.
In my meetings with the regular army I 've met some who to be honest are in for a very nasty shock when they leave the army and many who I know couldn't do what I've done for the last 17 years.
The T.A is a support arm to the regular army not seperate from it and IMHO should be completley integrated not kept seperate and should have to work along side the regular army regularly that would mean the regular army having to work weekends sometimes and the TA having to adopt a more professional outlook.
YOU ARE A WASTE OF MONEY AND EQUIPMENT THAT COULD BE PUT TO BETTER USE IN THE REGULAR ARMY
I WISH I COULD GET TAX FREE BOUNTYS WE DO GET BOUNTYS BUT THE SMALL PRINT AT THE BOTTOM SAY WE GET TAXED.NOW THERE IS A CALL UP OF TA AND RESERVE PERSONAL FOR A POSSIBLE WAR YOU ARE ALL CRYING ABOUT YOUR JOBS AND FAMILYS. ALL THE TA DO IS TURN UP TO THE SO CALLED TRAINING NIGHTS PLAY A LITTLE SPORT THEN GET DRUNK IN THE BAR WHEN THEY DO GO ON A TOUR YES YET AGAIN ON THE PROMISE OF MORE MONEY THIER TRAINING IS THAT OF A RECRUIT WHO HAS JUST WALKED THROUGH THE GATES OF A TRAINING CAMP.SO LADS COME AND JOIN THE REAL ARMY WERE WE ARE AWAY MOST OF THE YEAR ON TOURS AND EXERCISE HAVE TO WORK WITH BROKEN DOWN VEHICLES BECAUSE THE TA GET ALL THE SPARES HAVE NO PROPER UNIFORM TO WEAR BECAUSE THE TA GET IT ALL.TO SAME OF US THE ARMY IS NOT JUST A JOB IT IS OUR LIFE TO YOU IT IS JUST A HOBBY
The fact is the regular army needs the TA and Regular Reserves because there is a lack of manpower and skills in certain areas.
Yes, there are a few whingers about, complaining about being mobilised but the vast majority who are being called up are reorganising their lives at short notice to go and do their duty (7 days is not very long to sort out cover at work, make arrangements for your family and deal with all the admin from putting your normal life on hold for a year) .
The level of training and readinesss is often a significant issues - this is more likely to be due to lack of proper investment in training not a reflection of the people who give up their limited free time to train at weekends and during their annual holiday from their civvie job.
It's government policy and lack of investment that has led to the current state of affairs in the British Army - don't go taking it out on the TA with misguided and generalised comments. Just remember, you may be relying on a TA medic to save your life one day when you're been brought into a field hospital or on the TA RLC to get your supplies in.
what is the criteria for the tax free bounty? does every TA soldier get it every year? do they all get £1000+?
The bounty that you get is for long periods overseas if A TA soldier on op tellic spends the same time as you overseas he to will get his bounty taxed at the same rate.You will also get to that point first as he'll have no LSSA time built up Remember you also get X factor at 13 &1/2 % TA get it at 5% you get paid 365 days a year a TA soldier gets about 30 days a year. You also get subsidised housing free dental care, And lots of other little things TA soldiers don't get. And TA soldiers called up don't get bounty.
Would you give up your time of to be an electrician or work in a bank? as well as doing you army job I think not. Yes it is very much a hobby but one with a serious comittment that was in the past not likley to be called upon.
But now it is being called uon and yes some of my TA bretheren are showing their true colours we refered to them as 'bounty hunters' they do only the minimum needed to qualify for their bounty and nothing else. Don't blame the individuals who will turn up for the short commings of a military system run by and for accountants. The lack of spares,equipment,uniform' etc and the lack of numbers in the regular army is caused by people on much higher pay bands than me trying to do defence on the cheap. If it wasn't for FTRS you would be spending even longer away from home. And if the TA was disbanded well would the money saved go to the reguar army No the equipment would be sold off the TAC's sold to builders for a fraction of what they're worth and the money would be given to another government department to squander.
The army is a way of life i agree but it is also a very very sheltered and insular way of life.in the big bad world out there allot of the public don't give a damm about you or what you do in the army it doesn't affect them at all and when you leave all full of your self and your military acheivements they'll say so what. But they'll complain like mad when you cause havoc in their town or it causes them inconvinence. And I would say we aren't talking about small numbers of the population. To the general public they are more likley to know a volunteer in the TA (and yes they have treated it and us as a bit of a joke. ) But now that we're being called up and people they know or work with are vannishing at very short notice the operations that were very distant to them and well were in a far of land being delt with by the Army (who they don't know) It all becomes a bit more real. And If our powers that be would play the game and leak the shortcommings of supplies and manpower may be the ordinary public might push our elected lords and masters to provide better resources and being in the army might be a more pleasent experience cause you have the right kit and people. And maybe when you leave and go into civvy street as you will have to at some point what you have done in the army will mean something to the ordinary population
wells aid nurse; cpl_joe seems to be a bit dispondant about the whole army thing. maybe he should join the TA and find out what the score really is.
it always amuses me when lads from my unit go away on courses and end up teaching the reg ds, because the TA lads have far more experieince than the regs!
the other ting i have noted in my years, is that those who join the TA to do more than their bounty minimum are generally the ones with 'get up and go'. when mobilisation starts, these are the first ones that are selected as they are the keenest and better trained of the bunch; to me, it is unsuprising that they also hold down high level civvie jobs and subsequently, their employers are relucatant to let them go.
remember, it would be so easy just to sit on ones arrse all weekend and watch the football, go out with the wife and kids, but instead, there are some people that get out and train for thigs like op telic.
I'm sure your Regular oppos will support every word you say. Did you enjoy ATR/Depot? Because you're either still there, or waiting to join your first grown up unit.
Who told you the TA get all the spares and the uniforms? Why did we wait for years to get PLCE? How come we were still in Green trousers and Jumpers when everyone else had CS95?
How come the Regs are raping our kit for peacetime(lol) peacekeeping duties?
I don't know who told you, we were a drain on Reg resources, but it's bollocks. Unfortunately, this fairy story has been doing the rounds for years. If they close the TA down, where are all your medics/loggies/Engineers who actually know something going to come from?
Do you really think they would pass any savings made by closing the TA down, to the Regular Army? That happened after SDR did it? No, the money goes back to Satans Temple (AKA The Treasury) who decide where it goes next. Guess what, it won't go to you. It'll go on the latest gee-whizzy non-operational for years kit (Apache) or a multitude of other things, but not on a significant pay rise for the Regs, or more CS95 , more PLCE, More spares etc.
Go away and do some proper research, and ask, why exactly is it, that BritFor has such significant shortfalls in everything. Answer? Because every british government rapes and pillages the Armed Forces, and then plays catch up in war.
I have to say having read that little Rant from probably Private Joe, its the biggest load of shhhh poo i have ever read, maybe if you did get yourself over to a TA unit and actually find out what goes on there you might actually see that life certainly isnt like that for them
Your sort of attitude m8 is what gives us Regulars a bad name and increases apathy between the TA and the misinformed regulars that seem to think you have to do the job full time to be of any use!
I have a troop of people that are dedicated to the job, are porrly clothed because of the system and constantly wait on spares to fix ageing fleets, they are also willing ot go and do the job properly and having spent the last 17 years in the Regs i can safely say the determination and enthusiasm my guys put into the job make some regular units look a joke.
In fact having recently come back from Germany with my troop, i had the pleasure of being able to present my troop to the Brigade commander in the the field, who mistook them for the Regular unit that was co-located with us, the fact is they dont find the job boring and rarely moan about it,
granted some enjoy the TA as a hobby but it doesnt make them any less capable!
people like you should steer well clear of the TA anyway m8, they need Regulars who are willing to give them every support they can and not hinder them with attitude like that
The TA are a bargain. Lets assume that TACOS, medical, dental, housing etc breaks even with bounty.... in pure pay terms the TA cost a fraction of the cost of the regulars when they are trg part time. I have it on good authority that you get about ten STABs for one ARAB (makes sense at 30ish days per year against 365). Some will bleat about mobilisation, but not many. Working with 10:1, if 10% of the STABs are any use and turn up on the day then we have broken even. Looks like a good investment to me.
Obviously there is a difference between the mil skills and specific trade skills, but your average STAB has other skills, wider experience; both directly and indirectly relevant. They are also incredibly flexible, helping out on a number of occasions including Op FIASCO at the moment, not to mention in the Balkans, FI, Afghanistan, TELIC etc, both as individuals and formed units. Helping poor Joe out no end although he doesn't appreciate it.
Yeo tanky, what is that list all about - barking! Nursey's is better, but lets face it what we want is a little bit from every arm/service, and that is what we have got.
Aren't the TA Inf clutching at straws with this CCRF role. They desperately need something to claim they do apart from directing traffic on the cordon at an ICP incident..... and they are after an extra couple of MTDs to train for that!