The old days

Discussion in 'Infantry' started by Swift_and_bold, Jan 11, 2002.

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  1. Having retired from the Inf in '86, I have it on extremely good authority ( the barman at the Dog and Duck) that you guys in today have it easy! ( I am bracing myself for the onslaught)

    I understand that you can prance around in gym shoes these days, that the CFT standards are down, and county regiments have to take pyjamas into the field to go with their Cocoa ( nothing changed there then). In my day we 'ad it 'ard. CFT's with 58 webbing (still got the scars), SLR's ( mind you, used a grown up's 7.62mm), battle bowlers (useless), and DMS with puttees. Try putting them on in 60 seconds flat after PT!  I did just see the introduction of the SA80, hi-leg combat, and of course, most excitingly, the 'super' sock. Brings tears to my eyes thinking about them (should have seen what we had before).

    (Having said that I miss those days, but in my day it was a job for life if you wanted it )  Now come on you new lot, tell me I'm wrong and that I'm an old git. obviously however I am not interested in the opinions of the other arms because they don't count.  

    I have paused.
  2. having left the infantry in '86 I can only agree with you
  3. Signals kit is unchanged but the lack of comms means that we can genuinely claim to exercise mission command because once someone has been given a task there is no way of influencing the situation until they have either succeeded or died.
    PCBC has changed.  I regret to report that, in line with the Corps, young officers now proceed direct to Warminster and do not enjoy a period of RD before undertaking PCBC.  The advantage for the management is that students are still in frightened rabbit mode from Sandhurst and are much more suggestible.  From being a relatively civilised course with mature delivery it has become the sort of thing where TEWTs are concluded with a speed march back to camp.  Very Brecon.  This is likely to get worse when PCBC moves to Brecon and the rival instructors on PCBC and SCBC will be able to compete directly.
  4. If the course moves to Brecon how will those poor Guards subalterns ever get to London on time for the weekend? Will they introduce a three day week to give them a chance?
  5. On my course one Guards officer turned onto the A303 but phoned a friend when he got to Yeovilton asking for directions back to London.  Left or Right?? He did go on to win an MC so it proves that courage and brains can be mutaually exclusive.
  6. MAX


    This is not from Max, I am just using his machine.  Call me FOXHOUND.  Soldiers back in the days of Marlborough, Sir John Moore, Wellington, Kitchener, Haig, Montgomery etc etc etc must have been incredibly hard and incredibly good because every generation of soldiers thinks that "when I was in" or "when I did that" it was much harder than it is now and they were much better.   Warrant officers, for example, who are now telling everyone who will stay awake long enough to listen that recruits coming in now are "weak", "crap", "not up to it" etc, had exactly the same things said about them by warrant officers 20 years ago.  Having said that, I am sure that the man who left the Army in 1986 is much better and had it much harder than all of us who are slogging on today.  I hope that I am still serving in 16 years time, because it is going to be a real doddle then - I expect we will be paying the Army to let us come and sit around the luxury barrack blocks and messes.
  7. Foxhound

    At last , someone who has addressed my question. I posed it provacatively to try and get some discussion going, and I'm surprised no one has yet said F-off! Mind you, I do notice that no one has owned up to being in a County regiment.

    Do the woodentops still take the regimental silver into the field? I've actually seen it happen once in Germany(admittedly donkey walloper wooden tops).  Nothing like baiting the green wellie brigade!
  8. Swift_and_Bold? more like Sad_and_Old - as requetsed, 'F***  Off'  and move on!
  9. Well, Piggy, thank you for your kind thoughts. From your username I only presume you are in the military police. I suggest you make yourself useful and go and check some poor buggers papers.
  10. Dear sad_and Old

    What on earth makes you think that a monkey would be interested in reading the drivel that comes forth from your informed and up to date opinions of matters infantry.  Unfortunately 1986 was the year after I left school, I then became one of gods own combat team 2 years later.  Sad thing is, I still am, and just want my pension point to arrive in order to become a civy and write bollocks like you about how the Army isn't what It was like when I was young.  Anyway I look forward to reading some of your interesting, controversial  and stimulating etchings upon these pages.  Who knows it could be the beginings of a long and fruitfull corespondance?

    Love Piggy.  Onik! Oink!
  11. Well piggy, you should know from earlier postings that I aimed to be controversial to get the thing going. Seems like the mission was successful!!

    Now, there's an illegally parked car outside the guardroom. make yourself useful and take that Man's number!!
  12. Gotcha!  

    At least you seem to be realiastic as to what is or was.  Being at JSCS at the moment we are bombarded by senior officers so far removed form reality it is quite laughable.  Yesterday we attended a presentation about the Army in 2015.  It seems that the average pte soldier will require a Masters degree in computing to operate the 'eqpt' he is going to get.  How realistic is it that each soldier will carry such stuff as to communicate direct to the Div comd.  What bollocks.  Did you attend any breifings as to what the army would be like in 2002 back in the good old days when all you needed was long legs and hard feet?  If so was it as far fetched, and did you all think the tank was going to be redundant by now and we would all be able to communicate using data, and that all our soldiers would be literate?!!
  13. Yes, it's certainly fair to say that in the infantry then we had no need to be rocket scientists. Mapco, gridex, then batco was as hard as it got (thank god). I suspect the modern soldier needs to have other skills than just the obvious physical ones. You could probably argue that in a smaller army, they can be more selective, although they do seem to struggle to recruit now.

    We were told that the tank would make way for the helicopter, that it would be an all mechanised army (perhaps it is?, although this never interested me), and of course we should prepare for 'der tag' when the soviets were due to role across the border.

    Of course, we could load and fire 5 rounds a minute from our brown bess muskets! The firepower you have today is obviously far greater,  but I still think the 7.62mm is king.

    A different army for a different time, I suppose, but I guess the basic requirements must be the same.  As an old codger I have no idea what JSCS is, but good luck with it anyway.

    On another subject, and not as a windup, I still like to keep fit,  and would like to know the requirements of the modern CFT. From memory, it used to be 8 miles, with full belt order and platoon weapons. I seem to remember that we had to do it in 1hr 40 mins, but I think the actual max time was 2hrs.
  14. Same distance, same time, same kit.  Although now you have to do what are know as representative tests at the end.  Inf do things like fire man's lift, run 200m in a certain time, but having to throw yourselves on the floor every 10 m or so, as the PTIs shout  UP and DOWN. Some things don't change. Each Corps tasks are different, Air defenders for example have to load 4 missiles into HVM.

    In addition to the above The other Physical tests we do are Basic personal Fittness assessment evry 6 months (Army wide) used to be BFT but now includes sit ups and press ups, and run in trainers not boots.

    Specific to inf which we must do each of these once a year

    1.    INF CFT 20km first day in 4 hours with 30KG, then 20KM next day in 4 hours with 15 KG,(boring but youngsters tend to find hard)
    2.    2 mile Inf cft 15 KG in 18 minutes (bastard)
    3.    Fire team assesment, done for all Inf men in rifle and sp coys - CFT(normal) then a shoot which you must pass involves tgts a 600m to 300m, done a bit like the sect shoot at Skill at Arms meetings.

    Not so puffy as you thought, or is it?  I suppose we have a helmet with padding rather than a nail to balance it on your head.  But apart from that it's pretty much the same.
  15. As a non-infantry type all I would like to say is more power to your elbow.

    Having picked up lots of you guys in wet cold fields in the emerald toilet when you are soaked to the skin,freezing, knackered and you can still smile as you dive in the back then you get my vote.

    By the way,next time you are across the water staring at the Lynx that is circling the hedgerow you are hiding in remember that the CAMOUFLAGE clothing that you are wearing is quite bloody effective and we cant see you,even from 150 overhead,especially if you are wet.