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Vets visiting a UK Officer's Mess

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Vets visiting a UK Officer's Mess

Old 27th Aug 2022, 21:13
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My favourite was the 2.5 years I had at Bentley Priory where I only had a 30 metre walk from the Mess to work. Nice bunch of livers in - especially in the lower scruffs bar. Did you know that Regiment Officers wear DP shreddies?
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Old 27th Aug 2022, 21:18
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Originally Posted by radar101 View Post
Did you know that Regiment Officers wear DP shreddies?
Talking of shreddies -are Drawers,Short,Cellular still issued to Officer Cadets ?
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Old 27th Aug 2022, 22:45
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Originally Posted by NRU74 View Post
Talking of shreddies -are Drawers,Short,Cellular still issued to Officer Cadets ?
When were you in…..Boer War?
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 09:56
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Originally Posted by ACW599 View Post
I'd agree that the classical 1930s Expansion Scheme messes were (and still sometimes are) rather fine. However, some of the modern ones are fairly dire.

When I was on UWAS in 1973 the mess at St Athan felt like the height of luxury. On 633 VGS in 2013 the mess at Cosford...er...didn't.
I too was on UWAS and much appreciated the 'Georgian' architecture and solid comfortcomforts.I assumed all RAF officer's messes were of the same standard.
We once detached to Aberporth, where we were accommodated in buildings that were more temporary than permanent and I remember being rather disappointed at the surroundings.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 10:03
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Originally Posted by Bill Macgillivray View Post
MPN11, how right you are! However, if you had moved down the road from Uxbridge to West Drayton (agreed still bean-stealer territory, but I was not!) you would have found very different atmosphere!
Ah, WD ... strange place! Only did about 18 months there, LATCC(Mil) but was in MQs at Swakelys. The OH was there a bit longer, as OC SSF.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 10:32
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Originally Posted by ShyTorque View Post
When were you in…..Boer War?
Joined '61 that's 1961 not 1861 !
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 13:43
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Originally Posted by NRU74 View Post
Talking of shreddies -are Drawers,Short,Cellular still issued to Officer Cadets ?
I remember my then g/f had an uncontrolled fit of the giggles when I removed my trousers to reveal said garment. Certainly put my planned night of passion on hold.

Pretty sure I never wore them again

Back to the thread - what were your favourite messes? I could nominate South Cerney, Gutersloh ( a pre war Luftwaffe mess, complete with Goering's Room up under the roof) and Medmenham which was a late Victorian pile lived in by various wealthy industrialists until requisitioned during WW2. It had a spectacular dining room with a minstrel's gallery. Also I have to mention Catterick for sentimental reasons as it was my first mess ( see above) , now occupied by pongoes!


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Old 28th Aug 2022, 13:51
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Originally Posted by radar101 View Post
My favourite was the 2.5 years I had at Bentley Priory where I only had a 30 metre walk from the Mess to work. Nice bunch of livers in - especially in the lower scruffs bar. Did you know that Regiment Officers wear DP shreddies?
There was a Sgt. in the Radar Bay at Akrotiri who refused to supplement any issue kit items, even KD. Depending on how he was standing or sitting his Drawers cellular hung down below his shorts.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 14:18
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Originally Posted by Tankertrashnav View Post
Back to the thread - what were your favourite messes?
St Athan (a combination of the ambience and the company)
The secret helicopter base in Shropshire (excellent in all respects)
York House (always a delightful place to stay)
Bentley Priory (atmospheric beyond words, apart from "the bastards are up to something").
and Northolt, which had a certain charm.

Last edited by ACW599; 28th Aug 2022 at 14:53.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 15:38
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Favourites? So many different parameters at play here, so really hard to list ... and years, and living in/out of course.
IN.
Tengah (days of Empire)
Watton (Eastern Radar, small and exclusive)
OUT
Northolt (small and beautifully formed)
Bracknell (amazing diversity)
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 16:43
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Belize was pretty charming... Bellican beer, as much paludrine as you could stand, Jim Davidson, flying land crabs at the outdoor film screenings...

Sort of Tengah without the sophistication
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 17:02
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HQ RAFG - provided you were there on the night the dep cdr nixed the Great Dane from the second half of the show, having seen the exotic dancers' first half act.

Last edited by Paying Guest; 28th Aug 2022 at 18:55.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 18:33
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Khormaksar. .

I was in the mess at Shawbury a couple of months ago; still very much as messes used to be. In fact in the ante-room the green upholstered furniture was identical to messes of the sixties and seventies. Either incredibly hard-wearing, or there is a huge stock of them somewhere.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 20:01
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My Brother in Law talking to my Mother in Law whilst trying to fill in a form.

"They want to know what type of education I had"
"Well, Julian, do you think Eton gave you a good, all round education"
"I suppose it did"
"Put down comprehensive"

About the only thing we had in common.

Fondly remember the mess at St Athan
Rolling 20 - but Aberporth did have an up to the moment Space Invaders table.

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Old 28th Aug 2022, 21:14
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Favorite Messes:
Laarbuch - Buccaneer era - Blackforest Gateau for Tea - Cornish Pasties at Friday Happy Hour - excellent meals
Wildenrath - Phantom era - proper front-line fighter base atmosphere - excellent meals
Brampton Park - HQ RAFSC era - proper newly-built suites in the (then) New Annex even in the early 1980s
College Hall Cranwell - as DS in the mid-1980s - suite overlooking The Orange
York House Cranwell - excellent Day Duty Lunches when on presentation to courses away days from HQ STC / HQ Air mid-1990s > mid-2000s
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 22:53
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Originally Posted by Legalapproach View Post
My Brother in Law talking to my Mother in Law whilst trying to fill in a form.

"They want to know what type of education I had"
"Well, Julian, do you think Eton gave you a good, all round education"
"I suppose it did"
"Put down comprehensive"

About the only thing we had in common.

Fondly remember the mess at St Athan
Rolling 20 - but Aberporth did have an up to the moment Space Invaders table.
Must admit Legal, I don't remember that Space Invaders table.
That time @Aberporth, I roomed with you. That was the time when a certain future CFS chap demonstrated the correct Bulldog inflight abandonment procedure to the local fire brigade and 'jumped out' without his parachute.
To which he exclaimed : ' I'd better do that again!' 😀
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 23:04
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Originally Posted by ACW599 View Post
York House (always a delightful place to stay)
Yes, stayed there for WEC and EWOC. And so close to Tescos !
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 23:17
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The best ever mess? The No 2 Sgts mess at RAF Finningley for trainee NCO Aircrew. No adult supervision, hidden from the eyes of authority ( Mostly!)
Worst? New Daedalus Officers' Mess at Cranwell. Cold, sterile with no atmosphere.
RAF Digby was small and personal with the staff treating everyone as special, evening meals being asked what one would like for dinner and the chef producing it - no menu.
JARIC mess - the one where BPOM members came to happy hour to escape the VSO's and their hangers on.
Every other station's officers' mess was superb for the time I was a member, due to the people who were there;-
Kinolss, PJHQ, Laarbruch. Wyton, BPOM post-HQSTC, Aldergrove for its devil-may-care attitude.
Finally, the Muff-Inn at Al-Udeid, the best unofficial mess I've been to!

I believe there is a case to allow ex SNCOs and Officers to be allowed access to their relevant messes should they choose to. I realize that not everyone would want to, fair enough. But the opportunity should be there.

Last edited by cynicalint; 28th Aug 2022 at 23:36.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 23:18
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Originally Posted by Tankertrashnav View Post
I remember my then g/f had an uncontrolled fit of the giggles when I removed my trousers to reveal said garment. Certainly put my planned night of passion on hold.

Pretty sure I never wore them again

Back to the thread - what were your favourite messes? I could nominate South Cerney, Gutersloh ( a pre war Luftwaffe mess, complete with Goering's Room up under the roof) and Medmenham which was a late Victorian pile lived in by various wealthy industrialists until requisitioned during WW2. It had a spectacular dining room with a minstrel's gallery. Also I have to mention Catterick for sentimental reasons as it was my first mess ( see above) , now occupied by pongoes!
Locking up the empty, but sometimes creaking Gutersloh Officers’ Mess, at midnight as part of Station Duty Officer’s responsibilities was a thought provoking experience.
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Old 28th Aug 2022, 23:30
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Originally Posted by Herod View Post
TTN. Similar age, similar experiences. However, educated (??) in Australia, but I had to self-study for English GCE subjects, since the RAF wouldn't accept Aussie ones.

A few years ago I happened to be near Syerston. The Mess is fenced off, all windows broken, the roof almost falling in. I remember it on the evening of "wings" graduation. As you say, polished everything, band, our ladies in their finest. Times have changed I'm afraid. Mind you, so have I !!
I “lived in” in the Scampton Mess during my CFS course. I saw a TV programme a few days ago about 617 Sqn. Behind the presenter was the very sad and sorry looking Mess building, all boarded up and the gardens badly overgrown. Extremely sad to see that one in such a terrible state. There are many, many memories ingrained in those walls. An ex colleague of mine, in the Red Arrows in the late 1980s, encountered “someone” in the ante room very late one night. The “someone” was wearing WW11 flying gear…..
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