And a new way of viewing a web site compiled from small font sized separate iems. I recommend at this point something I have never recommended before but it is a useful tool as you will see as you delve deeper into this rather unusual web page. In settings, under systems and display  scale and layout change 100% to150% for the during of your read.  Put it back to 100% on completion.

It is inevitable that changes will be made to any complex organisation to keep it relevant, efficient, challenging and rewarding for those who spend a major part of their lives serving it. It, in this case is the Royal Navy. 

For the purposes of this page I am going to assume that those who are responsible for providing up-to-date ships, weapons, hardware, software and 'fighting' technology, are as good today as they have always been, and that the politicians will give the same priority to  DEFENCE as they clearly give to Welfare, Educational and the National Health, by building our armed forces rather than by cutting them. 

That leaves me with the management of the navy and the in-house control of Human Resources, namely its personnel. Most of this control is self generated by admirals and their staff officers acting on feed-back from the Fleet, although it would appear that more and more, outside forces dictate the outcome of their deliberations. Those outside pressures will become apparent as I look at the changes in the conditions of service from 1983, the year I left, to the early years of the twentyfirst century.  I will not comment on the more controversial decisions taken, namely women at sea and homosexuality, because, like many currently serving [so I have heard and have discussed with], I think the outcome must detract from the esprit de corps manifest in a group of men, each showing a controlled but goodly amount of male aggression, pulling together to make a ship the best in the Fleet.    These decisions are fait accompli through such devices like human rights, equal opportunities and race relations,  forced upon the Government and thus forced upon our admirals, and although causing some degree of difficulty in the first case {WRNS} and abhorrence in the second {Gays}, are nevertheless here to stay. In the Broadsheet for the year 2000 there is an article called "The integration of Women at sea" by an RNR female officer. In it, there is a paragraph which is so top-loaded with bias that it undermines the rest of the article.  It says "Ten years on {women first went to sea in 1990} there is a generation of men and women who have trained and worked together serving at sea in the Royal Navy's front line who have never known  any other environment, and most state that integration is not an issue for them."  If that is the case, how is it possible to compare what it was like when the navy was all male {at sea} with what it is like as a mixed crew? The article concludes that although the outcome is positive, a report has highlighted that a number of areas remain a cause of concern to some personnel.  One would have thought that after ten years at sea, ALL problems that are SOLVABLE would have been SOLVED and those not so, can NEVER be solved without irreversibly  changing the modus operandi of the Royal Navy as was.  The attraction for and of a female sailor, and the fear of attraction of a male homosexual sailor, are controlled by the written [EXPLICIT] word in an article called "Armed Forces Code of Social Conduct".  Gone are the days of IMPLICIT trust amongst members [male sailors] of the ships's company, allowing a degree of latitude in the spoken word passed-off as fun so as not to offend, where the wise sailor did not over- step-the-mark to cause meaningful distress, the very occasion acting as a bonding tools amongst mess mates and ship mates: no written rules were required and yet our ship was the best in the Fleet. It is my understanding, old fashioned though it may be, that when the men are together they have a patter all of their own, and equally, it is fair that when the women have a girls night out, they too might have, indeed should have, girlie talk. But put the two groups together, and decent men and women will behave in a decent way, negating at a stroke that extremely important Royal Naval occasion and proverbial stress buster, the run ashore.  How do female members of the ships company bond fully with male members? Answer they don't, and if they do, it is the women who have become 'indecent' in accommodating this integration, or, is it that the men of the navy [that's hetrosexual of course] are bound by a rigid set of rules which divide them from us, the pre-1990 sailor, and the navy we served in?  The hapless position these men find themselves in MUST affect the way they go about their business whether it be making/taking decisions, giving orders, 'grasping-the-nettle' to achieve instant results notwithstanding gender [or orientation], for, despite the obvious cover-up nowhere better shown than in the Broadsheet, the navy has become as POLITICALLY CORRECT as has the Nation at large, which surely is at cross purposes, for a fighting outfit  should be unshackled by civilian clap-trap. Amen.

Now for the changes.  In places, YOU WILL BE amazed!  All of them come from the BROADSHEET, the Royal Navy's way of keeping ex officers up to speed on changes in the Service - ex ratings are kept up to date with the Navy News!

For those of you who have never seen the latest BROADSHEETS [those that were published from the years 1994/5 onwards, although they go back to 1975 [the first year] but as dowdy non-glossy publications, and before that, back to the first issue of a Board of Admiralty magazine in March 1971 when they were called THE BOARD BULLETINS] a descriptive overview might be necessary. Whilst précising my description I suddenly realised that I could get my message across in many fewer words and more dramatically by saying:-

If the detailed contents of the BROADSHEET had been around in the 1950-1985 period, it would have required a mini-forest to print, such would have been its enormous size. 

WOMAN that is, and a damn good Jimmy as well.  In 1979, the then First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Henry Leach, issued a Broadsheet with just a two page Personnel section. Do you recognise anybody on page 2?

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It is only possible to have this highly professional publication because the Royal Navy is small,  operates as a tri service unit rather than as a separate armed force, has as many [and perhaps more] civilians pulling-the-strings in support roles, is parochial in that excepting Gibraltar, it is UK based with no global bases and deployed on sojourns. I did read somewhere along the line that "mobility" is the pivotal strength of the 21st century navy. Perhaps I am missing something, but surely, to have to move ships, arms and personnel from the waiting area [the UK] to the threat area, cannot be as effective as having forces already stationed in or near threat areas on a permanent basis. Of course I understand the shrinking world theory and accept that Britain has lost all of its bases, but wouldn't it be better were they to say, that whilst the methods of old were more preferable [the navy was more potent and efficient], given the alternative, we endeavour to get somewhere near by adopting highly mobile tactics;  that sounds a lot better and truly puts today's navy into perspective.  Smaller certainly; more professional most certainly, but only because of technology and small size leading to easier management, but far from better and certainly not an equal. Today's stretching of resources, at least for the navy  though sadly not for our soldiers or aviators [although slightly less so],  has but few of the problems erstwhile admirals have had to face when we look back to the Korean War {Allied and enemy forces from the UK, Australia, New Zealand, USA, China, North Korea and South Korea lost a million men between them}; Malaya Mainland War; Borneo Conflict; Chinese Incidents HMS Amethyst etc; Belize Conflict; UK Mainland Terrorism [intense bombings and murders]; Northern Ireland Terrorism [intense bombings and murder]; Icelandic Gun Boat Wars; Suez Canal War; Aden Conflict; Cyprus Conflict against the EOKA; Rhodesia's UDI and the Beira Patrol; The volatility and ever present threat to the Hong Kong region by mainland China's frequent attacks on Formosa; The Cold War per se twenty four hours a day, year in year out for a score plus years and close-to disasters like the Bay of Pigs [for example] and never a passage or an exercise without having a Russian spy ship in company known as an AGI; UK Strikes - Green Goddesses;  Falklands War; Royal Tournament Commitment; State/Royal Funerals; Singapore riots; Maltese riots; Bermudian unrest; etc, etc, etc, and much of this at times when recruiting was BAD and retention was VERY BAD - see the files in naval pay, whilst other wars/conflicts [which didn't necessarily involve the navy or our country] raged and affected the stability of the world with the constant threat of escalation and a third world war.  To mention some of them, they were the Vietnam War, Mau Mau uprising in Kenya, overthrowing of the Shah of Persia and the start of the hard line Muslim regimes, Russia's attacks [hot war] on its recalcitrant neighbours, Spanish stand-off and the permanent closure of the Gibraltar border with Spain, the Algerian War, the Lebanese War, Israeli/Arab Wars, Tribal African Wars etc.  To add this lot up and to quantify it in terms of deaths and percentages of losses in the Royal Navy, one would readily see the commitment of my time.  I pray that that commitment is not repeated over the same thirty five year period however measured.  If and when it is, the return and commitment of Service in my time will be fully understood, as we in my era, revere and salute those ahead of us whose commitment transcends all understanding of suffering and duty. Today, in the twentyfirst century, the biggest threat, that of communism, has gone and with it, the biggest bully Russia, and we are left, relatively speaking with a potential enemy which to our current advantage is divided.  That division into the good, the not-so-good and the darn right bloody evil describes the Islam nations, and if the good [and they are in the majority obviously] can convince the not-so-good to join forces to crush the satanic evil in their [and sadly, our] midst, all will be well, but if they fail, then the next big war, call it the third world war, will be caused by these powerful, proverbial and perverted Muslims which are every bit as evil as the Nazi and the butchers of the Bushido.

That said, by golly the BROADSHEET is a professional publication. Everything and everybody gets in on the act: one cannot but know the whole navy after reading cover to cover!  For example, although there is no longer a RNH Stonehouse, a RNH Bighi, a RNH Haslar, a BMH Singapore, a BMH Hong Kong etc, the medical services are well represented with enormous detail and personnel cameo's.  Not that it is a bad thing to know who the Chief of the RN Medical Services is [civilian, soldier, sailor or airman] for example [for we never knew in our day who it was], his or her responsibilities can only be minor compared with those of their predecessor's several times removed. Had the same coverage been given to all the naval hospitals and to military hospitals in which RN medical personnel served, and base sick-quarters [Portland for example], the publication on the medical services alone would be as weighty as the current Broadsheet. Of course for medical, read every other branch of the navy and all this at a time when the Bridge Card is getting smaller and smaller, coming ever closer to a situation where the tail 'bites harder' than the teeth and it starts to 'wag the dog'!

1983. In 1983, just as I was leaving, the navy were very concerned about officer recruiting, so much so, that on page 29 of the 1983 Broadsheet, they asked readers of the magazine to try and stimulate interest into just one suitable officer candidate, and once done, to telephone a certain number whereupon the navy would forward suitable literature. No such problems on recruiting ratings.  Of the 30,761 who applied, as few as 4000 only were accepted, and not nearly enough would-be Artificer material applied.  Clearly, the Falklands War had stimulated one group whilst switching-off another!

Sea time was earmarked as a problem which was to get appreciably worse. In '83 the sea/shore ratio was 40/60 but by '84/'85 it was going to be 50/50: not good for families. There are sailors of the pre-1983 period who did serve in ships which spend very long periods at sea, but by and large, our sea time was never of that order, and we had many foreign trips/commissions and good fun it has to be said. The Admiralty, in its efforts to ease the pain, has given six days extra leave for sea-going, additional travel warrants, and promised to upgrade shore accommodation.

The biggest change was probably that of the Artificer Rate. Up and until this year the technical branches had Artificers and Mechanicians, the latter in many cases doing the same job as an Artificer. There were also grades 1,2 and 3 as professional class designators. This change did away with the Mechanician Rate, and everybody suitably qualified, was called an Artificer. Also the 1,2 and 3 ceased to be used and military ranks were used i.e. CPO Artificer, PO Artificer. The old rate of Chief Artificer [the Chief Tiffy] was change to Charge Chief Artificer {CCA}.

Officers employment/appointments. Measures were taken to improve the X/WE [Executive/Weapons Electrical] relationship.  A pre PWO [Principle Warfare Officer]  Technical Course and the Maritime Defence Technology Course were established. In addition, the scope of appointments which may be filled by either an 'X' officer or a 'WE' officer was widened. A limited number of 'WE' officers who had obtained a Bridge Watchkeeping Certificate would be given the opportunity to qualify for PWO and serve one appointment only, as such. A study into the merging of the  Operations Branch and the WE Branch with a view to increasing the fighting efficiency of a ship was not thought cost effective and the idea was shelved.

And now I CAN BEGIN and please remember that I left the navy in 1983 after a 30 year career pining for the navy wanting to stay but wasn't allowed back in those days and what you will read here formed the basis of what the navy is today deep into the 21st century. You will [or may] learn quite a lot and on that score let me ask you a question. Way back in this period under discussion 1983-2015 we had a ship - a HMS NOTHING LESS - where every complemented person [a complement is the ships company [ratings] plus the officers aboard had his own personal cabin each with a bath room ensuite. would you be surprised? As you read this page don't miss the year 1998.  Look along the line to find 'accommodation' and left click the first smaller file of two. If you did increaase your zooming too from 100% to 150% as advised you made not see the whole of that page and its the bottom half which has the answer so do the following:- put your mouse on the word accommodation at the top half of the open page and there LEFT CLICK that word twice to open it fully. There on the bottom half you'll get your very important answer. Now let me tell you how to use these files.

Look for the date lines and all run from left to  right. Along these lines you will see lots of word in various positions around  a clickable file - clicking on words won't help you so please don't do it: only click on the images. You will soon get used to doing this but to start off you'll have concentrate namely that you will open images which will come up with its own closing cross so to close it do the norm and click on the cross. However just as many will not have a closing cross so to close it use the back arrow, IF YOU GET THAT WRONG YOU MAY HAVE TO RESTART THE PAGE ALL OVER AGAIN!.  Some of the images will reveal naval history in the raw, For example I left the navy in 1983 having joined in 1953,and during that time I never saw a proper substantive commodore,  they were all  temporary posts, their substantive ranks being a captain royal navy. The first ever commodore was created On the 10th January 2002, Captain Charles Anthony Johnstone-Burt was the very first officer in modern times to be promoted substantively to be a Royal Navy Commodore. Prior to that date, all Commodores held temporary appointments only, their substantive rank being a Captain R.N. Commodores, who unlike Admirals, continued to use the letters R.N., after their names.  Commodore Johnstone-Burt R.N. was a fleet air arm lynx helicopter pilot, promoted up the ladder  to vice admiral 22.11.2011 and retired in 2012.

The Open

 Engagement

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TrainingClick to enlarge Seamanship - Operations Branch Click to enlarge QARNNS -Males in their midst and WRNS Click to enlarge Click to enlarge

HMS Temeraire

Cadets and Armed Forces Youth Training Scheme AFYTS Click to enlarge

1984.

The 1984 Personnel news was all about manpower and recruiting

The current manpower situation Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Officer Recruiting Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Ratings Recruiting Click to enlarge HMS RALEIGH Click to enlarge Click to enlarge

1985.

 The future of Portsmouth + HMS Mercury and HMS Dryad, SMOPS and once again, recruiting

The future of Portsmouth + HMS Mercury + HMS Dryad SMOPS Recruiting and Length of Careers
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1986.

Recruiting + Retention [officers and ratings], Deployment of Manpower, Conditions of Service

Retention Recruiting Manpower Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Computers Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Training
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1987.

Officers + ratings recruitment and retention, Deployment of Manpower, Conditions of Service

Recruitment and Retention Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Deployment of Manpower Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Conditions of Service Click to enlarge Click to enlarge

1988.  Recruitment, retention and conditions of service for all ranks and rate plus WRNS at Sea?

Recruiting, retention, conditions of Service Click to enlarge Click to enlarge WRNS - Employment at Sea Click to enlarge Click to enlarge

1989.  Manpower planning, recruitment, retention and from the Chaplain of the Fleet

Manpower planning Click to enlarge Recruitment Click to enlarge Retention Click to enlarge Chaplain of the Fleet Click to enlarge

1990.  Manpower [of all titles], WRNS to Sea, Warfare Branch developments and from the Chaplain of the Fleet

Manpower Click to enlarge Click to enlarge WRNS to Sea Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Warfare Branch developments Click to enlarge Click to enlarge The Chaplain of the Fleet Click to enlarge Click to enlarge

1991.  Manpower planning with all that is involved.

Manpower bits and pieces
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 1992.  Personnel matters + ships' crests of the '90's navy

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1993.   Personnel matters + 'WRNS - THE LAST OF THE LINE'

Personnel matters Click to enlarge Click to enlarge WRNS -THE LAST OF THE LINE
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1994.  Management of Personnel and the Way Ahead + The Independent Review of Service Careers etc

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1995.  Personnel Commander, The People - Their Purpose.  The amalgamation of 2SL and CINCNAVHOME bringing all matters of Personnel under one head.

The People - Their Purpose - 2SL - CINCNAVHOME - Recruiting.
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1996.  Regret, no copy of this years Broadsheet - I am sourcing one.

1997.  From the 2SL/CNH - Equal opportunities - Personnel strategy 21st century - Recruiting - Stretching over the gaps - Naval manning Agency - One Star and Rising .

In this section, Commodores are mentioned. On the 10th January 2002, Captain Charles Anthony Johnstone-Burt was the very first officer in modern times to be promoted substantively to be a Royal Navy Commodore. Prior to that date, all Commodores held temporary appointments only, their substantive rank being a Captain R.N. Commodores, unlike Admirals, continue to use the letters R.N., after their names.

From the 2SL/CNH Click to enlarge Equal opportunities Click to enlarge Personnel strategy Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Recruiting Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Stretching resources Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Naval Manning Click to enlarge Commodores Click to enlarge

1998.  From 2SL/CNH - Career management for ratings - Ethnic minorities - Privatisation of MQ's - Afloat and Ashore accommodation.

2SL/CNH Click to enlarge Careers Click to enlarge Ethnic minorities Click to enlarge Privatisation of MQ's Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Accommodation Click to enlarge Click to enlarge

1999.  Pandora's Box ? Looking at these privileges accorded to modern sailors, cements my belief that given the 'toys' of our time vis-a-vis those available today, the admirals/politicians of our time gave us a bad deal and squandered our talents.

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2000.  2SL/CNH - Naval personnel strategy - Personnel functional standards - Drafting and career management - Code of Social Conduct - Integration of women at sea - Training and recruiting

2SL/CNH

 

Personnel  strategy Personnel functional Click to enlarge

 standards

Drafting and Click to enlarge

 careers

Code of Social Click to enlarge

 Conduct

Integration of women at sea Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Training and Recruiting
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2001.  2SL/CNH Letter - Top Mast - Regional Drafting - Officers' Career Management - Diversity - Operational Welfare Package - HMS Raleigh - Maritime Warfare School [MWS] HMS Collingwood - RN School of Leadership - Training and Education - Accommodation - Defence Logistics.

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Top Mast [Tomorrow's Personnel Management System]  Regional Drafting Click to enlarge Officers' Career Management & Promotion Click to enlarge Diversity   Operational Welfare Package Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Naval Military Training   Maritime Warfare School Click to enlarge Click to enlarge
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RN Leadership School Naval Recruiting Support [DLO] Accommodation in the RN Click to enlarge Click to enlarge Training & Education
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2002. Regret no copy of this years Broadsheet. I am sourcing one.

2003.  This Broadsheet is currently published on the R.N., Web site covering the period 2003/4.  However, Broadsheet 2004/5 is due shortly when it will be published in lieu of 2003/4. For that reason [and posterity] I have copied the personnel sections which are shown below. The subjects covered are Personnel: An overview of the year - Leadership Today, Forefront of Change, Branch Development, Training Overview. I have converted these subjects into PDF Files.

An overview of the year personnel an over view.pdf Leadership today leadership today.pdf Forefront of change forefront of change.pdf Branch development branch development.pdf Training overview training overview.pdf

2004/5.  Not yet published. Look for it when it appears on the RN Broadsheet web site.