Question No. QUESTION
1 In R.N. terminology, what one word comes before RESERVE GROUPS L or P or M or S?
2 In WW2 and post WW2,what two sets of paired words [names of FOUR vessels spoken and sometimes written] caused problems for the navy concerning the operational submarine world? Each pair of words were very similar, and to avoid confusion were modified by additions.  An example [though it never was] might be HM S/M Reaper and HM S/M Creeper, where the letters 'R' and 'C' might be added to differentiate between similar sounding names?
3 Armed Services Uniforms.
  a. Just feeling one's way around in total darkness the front of a naval officers jacket, how would one know whether it was a USN or a RN jacket?
  b. Which uniform of what country supports the stars and stripes and where are they worn?
  c. In WW2 Gurkha soldiers were taught that criss-crossed shoe/boot laces were the foot wear of a nations soldiers whereas straight laces were of another. Which soldier would die and which not ?
This little table has all the necessary letters to denote the FIVE SERVICES  of the Royal Navy. Can you disassemble the table using each letter only once to give your five answers leaving a blank table. Two of your answers will have three letters each?
A F S R -
A F S - -

5 Thinking tri-service both for the American and British armed forces.  What four letter word meaning additional is formed from the initials of lower deck personnel of the USN and the RN
6 This famous admiral, a knight of the realm, who was born in 1938, same year as me, left the navy in 1998. His name is Admiral Slater who took part in the 1982 Falklands War.  He had a rather unusual pet name which he and everybody used on a regular basis, spoken and written. What was it and why?
7 Applicable all things UK and so relevant for a naval quiz, what is and when is "Stir up Sunday".
8 Why do Norwegian and other North European warships use bar codes instead of names?
9 In the early days of WW2 we lost a capital ship called "The Mighty.............with a terrible loss of life. What was the name of the ship and in what year?
10 What mega-famous show did this navy line come from Even stokers need a little stoke”[meaning getting your end away]?
11 There's a thought that naval successes come from  a saying, a well known management saying, comprising of eight words only one of which doesn't begin with the letter P. To assist you,  the words appear either as they are or showing the first two letter i.e., 1 [Pr] - 2 [Pl] - 3 the word and - 4 [Pr] - 5 [Pr] - 6 [Pi] - 7 [Po] - 8 [Pe] ?  What is the saying and if you don't know why are you in management, be it top, middle of junior drawing loads of money?
12 What famous Portsmouth naval funeral had eight CPO's as coffin bearers and in what year [in the seventh decade of the 20th century]?
13. What do the initials SINS and SNAPS stand for?
14. From this famous motto 'sig off mag adm mag brit' comes this equally famous translation "THE DIFFICULT WE CAN DO AT ONCE THE IMPOSSIBLE MAY TAKE A LITTLE LONGER " Whose motto is this ?
15. If you were to hear the naval expression "A dose from the foretopman’s bottle" what would it imply and would that be good or bad.

The drinking of healths in the Royal Navy has always been looked upon as a ritual of some importance especially in the wardroom.  It is hard to say with exactitude what the toasts were for every night of the week, but I give the following which were told to me by a very old officer as being in vogue in the days of Nelson. Exchange the asterisks with a suitable letter.


MONDAY NIGHT                  Our ships ** / ***

TUESDAY NIGHT                 Our ***

WEDNESDAY NIGHT          Ourselves (as no one **/****** /to concern themselves with our welfare).

THURSDAY NIGHT              */ ****dy war or a ******/season.

FRIDAY NIGHT                     A willing ***/ and sea /****.

SATURDAY NIGHT              ********** and wives.

SUNDAY NIGHT                   ***/ent /*****/ds.

On Saturday night it is customary for the youngest member of the Wardroom Mess to be called upon to reply on behalf of “***/*****s.”


Scroll down to bottom of page for the answers.


The drinking of healths in the Royal Navy has always been looked upon as a ritual of some importance.  It is hard to say with exactitude what the toasts were for every night of the week, but I give the following which were told me by a very old officer as being in vogue in the days of Nelson:

































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































































1. SUBMARINE or SUBMARINES.  Many RN boats were stood down after WW2 and placed into various reserve groups around the country.

2. HM S/M Totem [T] - HM S/M Token [K] - HM S/M Tuna [F = Fish]  and HM  S/M Una with no addition

3a.  USN 2 rows each of three buttons and RN 2 rows each of four buttons.

3b. USA - USN - Bottom of tunic sleeves -  Star instead of loop or curl above stripes of rank and on shoulder boards. The word 'rings' is not an  expression used in the wardroom! 

3c. Japanese. Allied soldiers used straight lacings

4.  FAA - RFA - Royal Marines - Submarine Service - Surface Fleet.

5.  MORE - RN are called 'other ranks'  [OR] and the USN call theirs Enlisted Men [EM]

6.  JOCK - from his three Christian names using the JO of John, the C of Cunningham and the K of Kirkwood.

7.  The last Sunday before Advent. Set aside for the stirring of Christmas Puddings.

8,  So that they can be scanned in and out of  harbour   - ergo, scan da navy.

9. The Mighty Oak [HMS Royal Oak] 1939. There was also a Mighty Hood in the fleet.

10.The show Les Miserables - from the Song Lovely Ladies

11.The saying is - Prior Planning and Preparation Prevents Piss Poor Performance

12.Funeral of Lady Mountbatten [wife of Lord Mountbatten] buried at sea from HMS Wakeful in 1960 off Portsmouth.

13. Ships Inertial Navigation System [SINS] and Ships  instruments, radio aids and SINS [SNAPS] now many years old -SNAPS dates from the 1980's and SINS before it!

14. The motto of the Admiralty

15. a GOOD DRESSING DOWN - a REAL bollocking   

16,  at sea/ our men/ is likely/a bloody war or a sickly season/a willing foe and sea room/sweethearts and wives/the ladies