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Punk wearing RAF jacket interviewed by police

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Punk wearing RAF jacket interviewed by police

Old 26th Nov 2008, 11:54
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Punk wearing RAF jacket interviewed by police

According to the Daily Mail, a contestant on University Challenge has been interviewed and warned by police for wearing a RAF No 1 jacket with medal ribbons. Apparently he could have been breaking the law by "impersonating an officer" and "wearing medal ribbons he was not entitled to". However, the mohican seems to reassure me that the wasn't impersonating an officer (which is not an offence and, in any case, even serving personnel can wear uniform as fancy dress as long as it is obsolete/non-standard under QRs) and I doubt the spectacularly-hirsute young lad even knows what medal ribbons are.

So, why aren't the police always so particular in chasing up complaints - particularly involving obscene phone calls made on air which were far clearer breaches of the law?

Excuse me while I yawn and stretch a little....

What next? Round up those wearing German Army shirts or US Army jackets?

Punk student on University Challenge is a dead ringer for Vyvyan from The Young Ones | Mail Online

He doesn't look like your average University Challenge contestant.
Indeed viewers could have been forgiven for thinking they were watching a rerun of The Young Ones, which once featured punk character Vyvyan in a spoof version of the student quiz.

But while violence-loving Vyvyan was from Scumbag College in the Eighties comedy, back on the real University Challenge James Archer was representing the altogether more august King's College, Cambridge.

And in a move which Vyvyan would have been proud of, he has been warned against wearing his medal-adorned jacket in future by police after viewers complained that he was breaking the law by imitating an RAF officer.
Yesterday the second-year social and political sciences student claimed he decided to dress like this to dispel the 'stuffy' image of Cambridge.

The teenager was contacted by the police who warned him against wearing the clothing in the future.

Peter Wells, spokesman for Cambridgeshire Police, confirmed that a complaint was received from a retired member of the RAF.

He said: 'We can confirm that we received a complaint from a retired member of the RAF about medal ribbons being worn by one of the team members on University Challenge.

'We informally advised the student concerned that it could be an offence to wear medals to which he was not entitled and he took our advice on board.'
James, who is in his second year studying social and political sciences, appeared on the show three times in total, each time wearing the jacket.
He said he was surprised when he was phoned by the police after the second episode.

He said: 'I got the jacket from an army surplus shop and apparently it's illegal.
'After a previous programme, someone complained to the police and they phoned me and said it was illegal because I was imitating an officer.
'They said they wouldn't do anything, though, and the other episodes had already been recorded with me wearing it.'
JessTheDog is offline  
Old 26th Nov 2008, 12:10
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First of all,the chap was wearing a Corporal's No1 jacket (it had the tapes on the arm), which meant that he wasn't impersonating an officer, and second, I rather think that there's no law against it. Which law bars the wearing of surplus military uniform which still has rank tapes, medal ribbons on it? Does this mean that Army Surplus stores such as the one in Taunton which sells JHWs still replete with RM insigna upon it is facilitating the commission of a criminal offence?

Had he been wearing a PC's uniform, then he would've been in breach of the law. Likewise, I don't think that there's any UK equivalent to the Stolen Valor [sic] act in the States, so his wearing the medal ribbons left on the jacket when he bought it can't be an offence either...

Unless some law which would kill walting at a stroke has appeared without anyone here or on Arrse (with its infamous Waltenkommando unit...) spotting it, then the police would seem to have been wasting their own time?

On top of that, the bloke's hairstyle would mean that you'd have to be exceptionally pedantic to argue that he was impersonating a member of the armed forces.
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 12:13
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So the police have time to ring a punk who wears an old uniform jacket. They must have all the criminals locked up, all roads safe, no missing dogs and nothing left to do.

Or perhaps not
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 12:20
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So he was a teenage acting Corporal, then?
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 12:24
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I've racked my brains to see how this could be considered offensive. It is probably a little in bad taste, at most. However, there is a long and distinguished history of students and young types with outlandish hairstyles wearing military surplus uniforms....in my young days (harrumph) it was girls with dyed hair, German Army shirts and boots.

What should be of grave concern is the limits precedent this could set for selling on old uniforms after retirement!

I kept my No 1s and No 5s, wouldn't want to sell them on personally.
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 12:37
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So the police have time to ring a punk who wears an old uniform jacket. They must have all the criminals locked up, all roads safe, no missing dogs and nothing left to do.
Sadly when someone makes a complaint we have to investigate it regardless of our opinion on the matter. I would much rather be out chasing idiots on the street than question some guy trying to make a fashion statement.
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 12:45
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Sadly when someone makes a complaint we have to investigate it regardless of our opinion on the matter.
No, you don't. You can tell the person that it's not worth pursuing, and that you have better things to do. I know you can't really, but what ever happened to common sense?
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 12:47
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Hmm

How come when I had my wheels stolen from my car nobody could be arsed to even come out, let alone investigate then?
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 13:09
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The Telegraph says he was impersonating an officer. I can think of a few who have done that, all on full pay
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 13:15
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I wonder just how much truth there is in the story. If it is of the same standard as many of the "stories" in the Daily Wail, it will be just that, a story (even the details are garbled in the piece), an inflated piece of nonsense, based on the flimsiest foundation, whipped up to stir the ire of Middle Englanders.

If a "retired member of the RAF" can't tell the difference between an NCO's and an Officer's uniform, then how would he know that wearing medal ribbons was illegal?

As far as it goes, many descendants of decorated and now deceased servicemen proudly, and rightly, wear their relatives' medals at Remembrance Day services and, whilst they have a legitimate reason and the contestant didn't, the practice, if illegal, has been allowed for decades and the law is supposed to be evenly applied.

I saw Monday's edition of UC and my only thought was that it always amazed me, and still does, how many young people will happily wear redundant military uniform from choice, whilst at the same keeping as far away as possible from military service.

On the point of the Police "having to investigate a complaint", how come that doesn't apply when petty robberies from cars (radios and such) are reported and all the Police are prepared to do is issue a crime number to back an insurance claim?
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 13:45
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What are the rules on wearing uniform if you once served then? ie you served some time and have now left? I always thought that they couldn't wear uniform either but thought I'd ask anyway?
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 13:51
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Archimedes,

A Corporal is a Junior Non-Commissioned Officer by the way so yes he was impersonating an officer, just not a commissioned one.
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 13:55
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HairyNuts - I think Archimedes knows the difference between an Officer and an NCO
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 14:07
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He could well have been breaking Section 2 of the Uniforms Act 1894:

"It shall not be lawful for any person not serving in Her Majesty’s Military Forces to wear without Her Majesty’s permission the uniform of any of those forces, or any dress having the appearance or bearing any of the regimental or other distinctive marks of any such uniform: Provided that this enactment shall not prevent any persons from wearing any uniform or dress in the course of a stage play performed in a place duly licensed or authorised for the public performance of stage plays, or in the course of a music hall or circus performance, or in the course of any bona fide military representation."

Personally, I think common sense has a place in these matters.
(and I know I need to get out more)
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 14:16
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saw MOTORHEAD in concert a few years back, lemmy was (as usual) wearing an iron cross, i guess i should now be upset that one of my heros was fighting for the bad guys
p.s, i was nearly deaf for days after-thanks lemmy
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 14:57
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On two occasions I've been involved in dressing actors in RAF uniform.

On both occasions, they were asked if they would please mind not hanging about outside the building having a fag in public while wearing it.

Then I went to an RAF station and there, hanging around outside the buildings having a fag, were lots of people in RAF uniform.

Ho, hum.
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 15:00
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fish

Airborne, you beat me again as usual,

I was just about to admit to impersonating an officer for 16 years, and getting away with it!

What tosh. And the police wonder why they are held in such contempt.
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 15:09
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was the punk not a member of Cambridge UAS?
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 15:24
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Do you need someones permission to buy and wear from this Dallas Vintage and Costume Shop Blog Archive Dress Uniform Jackets shop..

Leave the guy alone...
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Old 26th Nov 2008, 16:33
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If he had been wearing the uniform in order to gain something - miltary discount perhaps - then there might be a Fraud by False Reprsentation there (makes a false statement with intent to make a gain or make someone suffer a loss)

But in this case - what a waste of police time (if the story is true)

Fraud by False Rep could be applied to those identified on the SAS imposter rumbled
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