The Royal British Legion - access denied!!

#1
A couple of years ago, Myself, another soldier and our two wives decided to pop into Southsea RBL for a quick drink. On arrival, and after flashing our MOD 90's we were informed that we were not entitled to enter as we were not members. This was a first for me! My local RBL welcome serving members and wave in anybody with an MOD 90.

I wrote to RBL in London (niaively thinking that the old codger on the door at Southsea had got it wrong) only to receive a reply which clearly stated (in bold type) that admittance is only for RBL members. This has happened to me on a few recent occassions and I have stopped frequenting RBLs. In fact, I have even stopped assisting them out of principal. My efforts and the efforts of my soldiers are now focussed on Royal Artillery Association Branches who treat us with the respect we deserve.

The reason for my rant is to see whether it's just me that's had this problem...or is it a common occurence?
 
#2
I have been to the RBL in Romsey and have been made to feel more than welcome. I went to the RBL in Weymouth, although they let me in I felt as wanted as Aids.

I am now a member and it's worth it.
 
#3
I have never had a problem getting in any RBL,they have always allowed us to drink in there and even hold functions. You probably stumbled apon one for WALTS,you would be surprised how many civies that have nothing to do with the military are members and the pressance of a real soldier panicked them :lol: .The other option you have is to join,it only costs a few quid a year,that way you cant be refused entry.
 
#4
It only costs a tenner to join the RBL, and having a MOD90 does not give access to the RBL as some cheap drinking den.

Stump up your tenner you will soon drink it back. :p
 
#5
mastergnr said:
A couple of years ago, Myself, another soldier and our two wives decided to pop into Southsea RBL for a quick drink. On arrival, and after flashing our MOD 90's we were informed that we were not entitled to enter as we were not members. This was a first for me! My local RBL welcome serving members and wave in anybody with an MOD 90.

I wrote to RBL in London (niaively thinking that the old codger on the door at Southsea had got it wrong) only to receive a reply which clearly stated (in bold type) that admittance is only for RBL members. This has happened to me on a few recent occassions and I have stopped frequenting RBLs. In fact, I have even stopped assisting them out of principal. My efforts and the efforts of my soldiers are now focussed on Royal Artillery Association Branches who treat us with the respect we deserve.

The reason for my rant is to see whether it's just me that's had this problem...or is it a common occurence?
The gentleman on the door was quite right. Being a serving member of the forces does not automatically give you access to a RBL establishment, membership is required. however, normally you would be asked to make a small donation and would be welcomed in with no problem
 
#6
It may be they are getting too much attention from the liscencing plods, by law you have to be a member to use the bar, and they can get into serious bother if plod finds them allowing non members to buy drinks. Mind you they could be a bit more communicative about things though.

Peter
 
#7
While on R&R after Med Man in Banff and having no bed for the night, I happened to wander into the Royal Canadian Legion. Welcomed with open arms and having explained the predicament of not having booked an hotel in advance, was directed across the river to the YWCA. "They're co-ed here ya know" , a great night was had by all. Come on RBL, you want us to join when we leave, take the lead from the Canadians.
 
#9
It might be argued that the future of the RBL is servicemen and women and that by making them feel unwelcome now will not encourage them to join at a later date. I experienced a similar attitude some time ago when I visited my local RBL Branch with a view to joining and was greeted with the sentiment that it was for people that had served during WW2 and that everything since had not been "real" wars. Having just returned from a particularly busy NI tour I was somewhat pissed off and decided not to continue with my application. RBL don't forget the past but please look to the future.
 
#10
A few years back after leaving the Army I went through a rough patch with an injury caused "while in the Army". I was off work for a year and couldn't walk very well without the aid of a walking stick. I was awaiting the date for a major op on my back. I asked the Social for Income Support and was refused point blank. Things were not looking good. Someone advised me to approach the RBL for help which I did.

I recieved a letter back which was also a point blank refusal. It was quite an abrupt and rude letter and reading between the lines said - Fck off. I was very saddened at their approach to me, not only the fact that they refused to help a ex member of the forces, but their attitude towards me.

I would not even think about going into any RBL for a drink. My money will defo not be going into any of their tills, or anything to do with the RBL.

BT.
 
#11
I'm a fully paid-up member of the RBL.
I'm NOT a member of the local RBL Club.

... there is a difference, and I suspect licencing laws may have a bearing on the issue. I admit I've never tried to go in for a beer anyway, but as I'm not a Club member I wouldn't feel entitled to automatic entry.
 
#12
I am a fully paid up member of the St James Branch of the RBL. This is a central branch where all serving members can affiliate to when moving around until you finally settle. This does allow you access to any RBL. However, I have not and will not visit my local RBL as it is in the middle of a chav estate and has the less desirable elements as members.
 
#13
Could be wrong but to get around licensing laws, is it not possible to make all serving soldiers honorary members?
 
#14
I'm sure we were told (long time ago) that all serving soldiers were "temporary honorary members" of the legion, same as in the UJC or VSC? I wen to several clubs on my MOD90 but as 57 Chevy says, I felt about as welcome as a dog turd.

It did put me off joining, although I was a member briefly in Edinburgh.

The legion is just too full of old men in cliques. They aren't encouraging to younger members (and I'm 48). Sad to see such a nominally useful organisation for servicemen die off but that's what's happening and its all because of this attitude.

As for assistance. They offered to "assist" me in a claim for the VA. What it boiled down to though was them wanting to take over the case. I refused to let them do that so they told me (in not so many words) to feck off.

I complained and got nowhere.

Jobs for the boys is what it's about and if your face fits, you're in, if not, you're out.
 
#16
Shortarms is right. Civvies/non ex-servicemen are now entitled to be full members of the Legion, previously they were only allowed to be associate members. Since then the non service element have taken over many Legion Clubs which was pretty easy since who the hell wants to sit on committees etc. except a certain type who just love to make up rules to fcuk the real members off.

I too was under the impression that a serving person could go into any RBL Club, if that is not the case they could always ask for a member to sign them in.
 
#17
GDav said:
I'm sure we were told (long time ago) that all serving soldiers were "temporary honorary members" of the legion, same as in the UJC or VSC? I wen to several clubs on my MOD90 but as 57 Chevy says, I felt about as welcome as a dog turd.

It did put me off joining, although I was a member briefly in Edinburgh.

The legion is just too full of old men in cliques. They aren't encouraging to younger members (and I'm 48). Sad to see such a nominally useful organisation for servicemen die off but that's what's happening and its all because of this attitude.
As for assistance. They offered to "assist" me in a claim for the VA. What it boiled down to though was them wanting to take over the case. I refused to let them do that so they told me (in not so many words) to feck off.

I complained and got nowhere.

Jobs for the boys is what it's about and if your face fits, you're in, if not, you're out.
glad it's not just my opinion then
 
#18
Support them now while you are young so they will be there to offer support when you are old.
(from experience)
 
#19
This is a very real problem with ex-service clubs and associations. They have to make money to pay rent/bills to survive and they are just not used enough by real ex-servicemen.
They have subsequently opened their membership to any swinging d.ick who fancies a cheap pint and a game of snooker. :x

If anyone is in Southend on sea, visit the Naval and Military Club in Royal Terrace. You HAVE to be an ex-serviceman to join and serving soldiers, sailors and airmen are more than welcome.

There is a shortage of anyone under 50 odd years old, which is a shame, if you dont use these places, you lose 'em! :(
 
#20
siggie47 said:
Shortarms is right. Civvies/non ex-servicemen are now entitled to be full members of the Legion, previously they were only allowed to be associate members. Since then the non service element have taken over many Legion Clubs which was pretty easy since who the hell wants to sit on committees etc. except a certain type who just love to make up rules to fcuk the real members off.

I too was under the impression that a serving person could go into any RBL Club, if that is not the case they could always ask for a member to sign them in.
Could'nt agree more!Ihad'nt been into my local branch in Donaghadee for ages,One Saturday after staggering out on the Moat Inn,I called into the branch.Apart from a few OAP regulars & one bloke at the bar who was Ex-UDR,the rest was either from a funeral party or local girls from the estate heading over to Bango on the lash.
It strikes me that we are now a minority in a association that was set up for us.
Regards,
Spike
 

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