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Wearing of uniform by retired personnel

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Wearing of uniform by retired personnel

Old 20th Nov 2018, 07:46
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Wearing of uniform by retired personnel

Guys - would appreciate quick answers to this thread with references if possible. A Branch of the Service has recently lost 2 exceptional officers (one serving and one retired) at a young age. Their funerals will be very well attended by serving and retired officers, but a few retired people are talking of wearing uniform to the occasion which I am pretty sure is against a whole host of rules. The very last thing we need is for this to happen and attract a lot of unwanted attention. Can anyone point me to the actual rules that I can quote to these idiots?

CB
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 08:11
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QR s I believe. Generally I think you are correct but as usual there are exceptions. One I believe is at a Remembrance parade but I think when you are representing the RAF.

I have certainly seen retired officers wearing mess dress. One was a retired sqn ldr doc with an RN presence at a formal dinner. No other retired personnel wore uniform.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 08:23
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Thanks PN - I believe that as a retired officer I can wear No 5s at a DIN but these people want to wear No 1s and medals at the funeral which I think is definitely a no go. CB

Last edited by Canadian Break; 20th Nov 2018 at 08:46.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 08:34
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Pretty low to call a retired serviceman a Walt for wearing their uniform and their medals.

There are defined circumstances where retired officers are requested to wear service dress, but as with anything in service life these are not at self-appointed times.

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Old 20th Nov 2018, 08:46
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JTO - you are correct - I apologise but I am sure you get my meaning. However, I have amended the post.

CB
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 09:55
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The vast majority of the Royal Family get away with it. They even continue to get promoted as well!
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 10:35
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Canadian Break - here is chapter and verse on when you can and cannot wear service uniform (RAF dress regulations, para 0117). Funerals are not included in the list of permitted occasions

https://rmhistorical.com/files/conte...ons%202004.pdf
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 11:35
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Originally Posted by Tankertrashnav View Post
Canadian Break - here is chapter and verse on when you can and cannot wear service uniform (RAF dress regulations, para 0117). Funerals are not included in the list of permitted occasions

https://rmhistorical.com/files/conte...ons%202004.pdf
Hmmm...Para 0117 seems to indicate that these Retired Officers may have the authority to wear uniform to this funeral (assuming they are officers, which the OP has not explicitly specified. If not, then Para 0114 kyboshes it: "Non-commissioned ranks are not to wear uniform after their discharge from the Service". (Discriminatory against ORs? Hot potato..catch!))

0117. Occasions when No 1 Service Dress may be worn. Officers on the Retired and Reserve Lists, Royal Auxiliary Air Force officers and ex officers who are permitted to retain their rank may wear uniform on the following occasions: a. When attending:
....

(4) Their own wedding or other military weddings when the sponsor requests the wearing of uniform. (Comment: If the functions 'wedding' and 'funeral' are generally seen as similar social events and the sponsor has requested it...who can stop them?!)

(5) When attending formal Service functions. (Comment: Is this funeral a Service funeral? If so, then the authority is there!)

As an aside, this little nugget should have stopped the untidy gaggle of mixed-dress joint Service detachments who march in Gay Pride! (which is both a Carnival procession and a political meeting).

0113. Occasions on which uniform is not to be worn:
....
e. Carnival processions and other occasions when the reputation or political impartiality of the Armed Forces might be brought into question (e.g. political meetings).


After all, the Army recently sacked a Phase 1 trainee for merely having a photo taken with Tommy Robinson. What's good for the goose etc!

An extra aside, I was persuaded by an RBL official to wear uniform to collect donations for London Poppy Day this year and as I am Retired and on the Reserve List I believe this applies:

0117. Occasions when No 1 Service Dress may be worn. Officers on the Retired and Reserve Lists:

b. When participating in an official capacity, in: (1) Non-Service parades. (2) War Memorial services and associated parades.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 11:47
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Sorry to move the thread in a different direction, but sadly there is no way I would now fit into my old uniform
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 12:02
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Originally Posted by Saintsman View Post
Sorry to move the thread in a different direction, but sadly there is no way I would now fit into my old uniform
If you think you're unique, I have news for you!
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 12:50
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CB, just an observation from an Antipodean ex service person, after you have left the military, frankly, no one gives a toss about what you wear.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 13:00
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When one retired from regular service, there was a huge stack of paperwork, including the dos and don'ts of uniform.

ISTR - and it's in the spirit (if not the letter) of 1358 - that the basic rules boiled down to 3.

1. Only ever No 1s or No 5s

2. Only when regular personnel would be wearing uniform.

3. If worn, standard of turnout must be up to regular standard (sic) - known as the no earrings or beards rule (unless you're a Prince!)

So - purely my interpretation - if regulars are wearing No 1s, then do so.

Questions arise: why at a Wedding and not a Funeral? And what are they going to do if you (apparently) transgress 1358?

And - as has been mentioned - this applies to Officers and (explicitly) not airmen.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 13:39
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Not something I personally would do but really cannot see an issue for those who previously served and felt it was appropriate. I certainly wouldn't be offended and suspect the gesture would be well received by the families of the departed souls at this particular funeral. Maybe just let it run Canadian?
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 16:51
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I left almost 25 years ago and the last thing I'd want to wear would be my old uniform (or even a rather larger sized one than I used to fit into). I see no purpose in it.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 17:09
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Sorry to butt in but may I ask a question please? May senior RAF officers retain their ranks in Civilian Life? I ask because in another life I was a lowly clerical wallah in Min of Av and there were a number of ex-RAF and RN officers working close by. Some liked to be referred to by their rank but others preferred just "Mr" in civvy life. Thanks.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 18:55
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HD
When I retired I was given to understand that senior officers (Sqn Ldr and above) and their equivalents in the other services could use their rank if they wished. Junior officers could do so, but only after obtaining permission. Presumably Captain Mark Philipps got the ok! I've never bothered and after 18 years I cringe if someone raises the subject - Mr seems fine to me, but sometimes it may be relevant to the job someone's doing, so horses for courses.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 18:57
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I saw plenty of retired officers pitch up in uniform to ACM Moran's memorial service, which was attended by the Duke of Edinburgh as well as all the VSOs; nobody worried about it. If you want to wear your uniform (usual caveats re appearance) to a Service funeral, crack on.

For Heathrow Director, use of rank technically depends on how your retirement was Gazetted - assuming you were not going under some sort of cloud, the phrase was normally "retaining the rank of ...". So, yes, you are perfectly entitled to use the rank, but it is a matter of personal choice (and circumstance) whether you do so or not. For example, someone attending a Mess function as a guest might well use their rank, whereas when working in your second career making widgets in Company XYZ, most would opt to stay as Mr.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 19:17
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Thank you Gentlemen - much appreciated.
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 20:40
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When I retired I was given to understand that senior officers (Sqn Ldr and above) and their equivalents in the other services could use their rank if they wished.
On retiring I reappeared as a Civil Servant: all concerned probably knew my old rank but I was Mr. Just as well as I worked for many Sqn Ldrs over the years and using my old rank would have been a tad embarrassing all round!

Now I've retired fully, at sqn reunions etc ranks reappear on the seating plan - but I couldn't fit into my No5 now!!
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Old 20th Nov 2018, 21:28
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Originally Posted by EngAl View Post
HD
When I retired I was given to understand that senior officers (Sqn Ldr and above) and their equivalents in the other services could use their rank if they wished. Junior officers could do so, but only after obtaining permission. Presumably Captain Mark Philipps got the ok! I've never bothered and after 18 years I cringe if someone raises the subject - Mr seems fine to me, but sometimes it may be relevant to the job someone's doing, so horses for courses.
Mark Philips use of rank is something, I believe, to do with an exemption ex-Cavalry types can use if still playing with horses....
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