I have always believed Waitering to be belittling and beneath any soldier unless specifically working in the mess. I was always under the impression that Waitering was not a duty or a punishment under QR'S and the individual could not be made to Waiter at an event but he could be asked. Is this correct?

Any reference to QR's would be an added bonus. Cheers.

Note: I'm not waitering - just finding out for one of the guys :wink:
At my unit it was always an extra or if someone volunteered they would be paid!! Not sure the regs on it though, would be interesting to find out!!
If you volunteer you should recieve ED pay. I don't know about regs but I don't think you should be made to waiter as a punishment. ROPs and extra's are punishments. If I was in the shit and was told to waiter-on I'd ask to recieve an extra duty instead.
just go sick complaining of dermititis & the med centre cannot give you a "fit ot handle food" certificate.
As a private I waitered on/ pan bashed etc. Just took it as part of being a new guy - everyone had done it at some point. Fast forward 5 years or so and as a full-screw I was ordered to waiter on at the orifices mess. Not been a bad boy or anything but because I was one of the few who had Barrack Dress that they wanted the waiters in!

Pointed this out and told to soldier on. Which I did but I certainly wouldn't have wanted to eat the food I served...

My point? None really. The Army plays these little unfair games at times :D
there is nothing covering miss employment in QR's I believe it should be written into your USO's

heres a link for QR's

I myself see no problem waiting on, Obviously. :D
Anyone we used to bring in from the tank park to wait on was paid ED pay which was charged to the officers mess bills.

If you are in the UK and a contractor runs the mess, depending on the contract, they have to provide waiter and pan bash staff - this the mess still gets billed for. HOWEVER if they get the guys to wait on - the blokes are doing it for the civvy company - so the civvy company pays their ED pay, whatever happens it all comes out of the mess members pockets for that function. BUT the guys MUST get paid under employment law.
Five f*cking years for fullscrew :x
SPROG :D :twisted: :twisted: :wink:


I've seen this from all sides of the coin.

As a sprog, waitering was always a dicking, and you just got on with it and suffered accordingly. A few years later, probably through influence of a top quality RSM, waitering for the Seniors wasn't too bad and i was carried out the Mess on a few occasions via the kitchen when the mess members had "tipped" me a couple of doubles too many.

Then the ED pay thing kicked in, and it seems now that mess waiters must be "volounteers", and therefore paid for it. Fair enough! I didn't volounteer often, but did for various functions when i knew for sure that certain characters in the regiment would be keen to corrupt the juniors (summer/xmas balls etc) and always had a whale of a time.

I am now lucky enough to be waitered on in the mess, and on occasions when we have to get the lads in to waiter on, i always return the favour lent to me by my predecessors by making sure the lads waiting on me get as smashed as i do!

Anecdote to Hairy_Hacker:
At a Sgts Mess summer ball a good few years ago, a handful of Full-screws had also been dicked to waiter on. One of them said "Fcuk it, if they're gonna treat me like a lance-jack i'll turn up as a lance-jack!"! And sure enough, he turned up in barrack dress with only one tape on.
Anyway, the prize draw was open to the whole regiment, not just the mess, and he won the top prize (a brand new car!). Called up to the stage, the CO said "Congratulations Lance Bombardier F****!" which was quickly followed by the RSM saying "See you in my fcuking office tomorrow fcuking morning, BOMBARDIER F****!!!!!"

If you rebel, be prepared to be caught out!!
I usually like to think I'm the type of bloke who just cracks on with things and tries to keep the whinging to a minimum (as far as that is possible for any squaddie) but I must admit that waitering-on is the exception to that. I absolutely despised doing it - not so much because of the embuggerance factor but because I felt degraded and, to some extent, humiliated by having to do it.

I think that this is an issue that's quite distinct from the usual 'if you don't like it, hand in your bedding'. Yes, we exist in a clearly defined rank-structure and long may it continue. And, yes, subordinates must show the necessary deference to those above them. But that doesn't mean that junior soldiers should be used menial servants for SNCOs or Officers. This is another example of an aspect of military life that would outrage almost all civilians and in this case - and this case only - they would be right to be outraged.


Wedge, that's why the lads that waiter on now get paid for it, and are asked to volounteer instead of being dicked.

And if you waitering experiences were that bad, you must have been in a regiment full of tools - or maybe i was just lucky. Any SNCO worth anything still has a feel of where he came from and won't fcuk the waiters around too much - unless of course that SNCO happens to be a complete stroker both in and out of work.
3 months mis-employed

when he heard the news
He said "What the heck!"
"You can't send me"
"I'm a driver mech"
"I'm a Tanky me mate"
"Muscles like Arnies"
"The ruperts can make"
"There own fuggin sarnies"
Five f*cking years for fullscrew :x
SPROG :D :twisted: :twisted: :wink:
I thought I did quite well considering I was not all that great a soldier...

beast! :crying:

Fugly said:
...If you rebel, be prepared to be caught out!!
Totally agree - I didn't stick my head above the parapet often and still don't. Anything for a quiet life. If I'd been caught inserting and removing foodstuff from various bodily orifices prior to serving to officers then I would have expected and accepted the consequences.

I figured after 5 years of dedicated service I shouldn't be jiffed when there were loads of private soldiers just going down town getting ratted and bigging it up when they'd only been wearing green 6 months.

As a slight digression at the time as a full screw there were so few of us around at my unit that I ended up on day off/ day on duty for a fortnight due to shortages whereas privates and lance jacks got one or two duties a month. Sh!t-bust I know but being 'asked' to waiter on as well? Only human matey :wink:
I, too, have seen this question from both sides! Yes, it was an embuggerance, but I was paid and the supplies of booze and food were usually pretty liberal. The totty on display was usually pretty good, with plenty of bingo dresses and lots of flesh! I also got to see the way in which the members of both Messes behaved - and their differences - and gained an idea of where I should be heading - in career terms.

When my turn came to reciprocate, I did so, and the RSM subsequently assured me that LCpl F****** would only spend 7 days on ROPs! :lol:

A few more years have passed, and it has all changed. Most Messes I have visited in the last 5 years have been contractorised and it is now extremely rare to see a soldier waiting on in the Sgts' or Officers' Mess.

So, how does the modern soldier find out about the Messes to which he/she should aspire, and the behaviour expected of him/her? Well, he doesn't, unless the Regiment includes a visit to both Messes as part of the soldier's education - and how frequently does that happen?

That world has changed - and I am not sure it is for the better!

Fugly said:
Wedge, that's why the lads that waiter on now get paid for it, and are asked to volounteer instead of being dicked.
News to me. Not the case here.


I did a spot of pan-bashing and waitering for my Sgt's mess in my TA unit. I loved it although it was a long stint after a day's work. Our WO2 Master Chef made sure that all the bods on GD or Waitering had a plentiful supply of free booze (well he paid for it). Also we got a days pay for it as well as we didn't stop working until about 4am and a fry up was thown in.

As for this being a punishment, look at AGAI 67, minor sanctions under Regimental Work (for a Sat and Sun and outside normal working hours), I think you will see that this is any extra work that benifits the Regiment (reasonable work not polishing parade square with toothbrush etc), this is an administrative action i.e human rights compliant, not discipline, therefore, waitering on a Regimental Dinner could be perseved to be benefitial to the Regt

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