The captain, britannia royal naval college

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Photographs. Cadets may wish to bring pictures of friends and family for their cabins.

  1. Laptop. The College has a large number of computers to which Cadets will be given access. However, if Cadets have their own laptop then they may bring it with them provided it is registered when on arrival. There is no requirement to purchase a computer. NOTE: There is very little time to use a laptop during Militarisation and there is no internet connection for a laptop within the College.

  1. Mobile Phone. These may be brought into the College providing they are registered upon arrival. Cadets are permitted to use mobile phones providing it is within their accommodation and not in offices or around BRNC.

  1. Bluetooth Headset. This is not necessary, but if Cadets have one, they should consider bringing it. There is little time to phone family and friends in the first few weeks, but Cadets will be doing plenty of ironing, which can be completed whilst on the phone.

  1. Permanent Markers. Fine line for marking items of clothing. Thick marker for labelling larger items of kit. Though not essential, they are very useful and recommended for marking the kit you take to Dartmoor. Their purpose is to keep your kit yours.

  1. A few other ‘top tips’:

    1. Iron-on name labels will save a lot of time in your first few evenings, but they must be firmly attached to survive the communal laundry system.

    2. A good ironing board is not essential, as there are ironing boards available at the College. However a good quality ironing board will make ironing easier. If you cannot bring a board, then a decent board cover is recommended.

    3. A digital watch is useful for Dartmoor; it must have a stopwatch function.

    4. Though not essential, a windproof lighter will be very useful as the winds on Dartmoor can be very strong.

    5. A head torch, if brought, must have a red light feature. This will not be required until Ex ABLE.

    6. A ‘Vanish stain removal bar’ is ideal for removing polish marks from white shirts and is highly desirable.

Annex B to

Chapter 2

  1. The deportment, appearance and conduct of Service persons, whether in uniform or in civilian clothing, shall on all occasions reflect credit on the Naval Service and upon the individual. It is the responsibility and duty of all those in authority to ensure that the policies, regulations and instructions contained herein are adhered to. When transiting in uniform Service personnel are not to eat, drink or smoke; there are areas designated for these activities in all Ships and military establishments.

  1. Smart and presentable appearance. Officers shall be well groomed with smart and properly pressed uniform and clean footwear. In particular, buttons, fasteners and zips shall be kept closed; pockets shall not be bulged; personal items such as glasses, sun glasses, pens, pencils, key rings, bluetooth headsets, electronic tablets or papers shall not visibly protrude from pockets nor be suspended from waist belts or pockets. Mobile telephones, bleepers, personal radios, music players and other such electronic equipment, shall not be visibly worn, or operated except when provided from Service sources for the performance of a specific duty where their ready accessibility is required. Service personnel in uniform are not to use their mobile phones when transiting in Ships and establishments.

  1. Jewellery. Apart from wristwatches and cuff links where appropriate, no jewellery or bracelets are to be worn with uniform other than those listed:

    1. Signet, engagement and wedding rings for male personnel.

    1. A single small plain silver or gold sleeper or stud (not more than 6mm in diameter) earring in the centre of each earlobe for female personnel. Cream or white pearl studs may be worn with No 2 uniform.

    1. When in Ward Dress a wedding ring is the only item of jewellery permitted to be worn by QARNNS personnel.

    1. No charity wristbands may be worn by personnel at BRNC.

  1. Body Piercing. Other than those items detailed at para 3 above, no form of jewellery is to be worn on the body. Even where a part of the body has been pierced or prepared, whether for any ring, stud or sleeper, no such items are to be worn when in uniform or on duty.

  1. Body Art (Tattoos). Tattoos which are visible when No1 uniform is being worn, whether because they extend beyond the collar or cuff, or because they are being worn on the face, neck or hands, are not acceptable, are contrary to current regulations and must not be acquired.

    1. Officers’ tropical No1 uniform does expose forearms and lower upper arms. Regulations permit the exposure of tattoos in these areas, provided they conform to the rules governing all tattoos wherever they may be.

    1. Visible tattoos must not be garish or numerous or particularly prominent (which will depend on its size and location).

    1. Tattoos are not acceptable if they are judged by the Commanding Officer (or at the recruiting stage the Recruiting Officer prior to enlistment into the Naval Service) to be reasonably likely to:

      1. Undermine the authority or dignity of or bring discredit to the Service.

      1. Offend others or invite provocation, for example because they are obscene, lewd, crude, or intimidating or are in any way offensive to members of any minority group.

      1. Affect the employability of the wearer, for example by making it unacceptable for that person to parade or stand guard in public.

    1. Commanding Officers may order personnel with tattoos which contravene the provisions above, but are not visible in No1 uniform, to cover them up.

  1. Nails. Are to be kept neatly trimmed and are not to be of an excessive length. No coloured nail polish is to be worn. Nail art and false nails are prohibited.

Male Personnel

  1. Hair. Shall be neatly groomed; taper trimmed at the back, sides and above the ears to blend with the hairstyle. On the top of the head it shall be no more than 15 cm in length and sufficiently short at the front and sides that when the hair is groomed and headdress removed, no hair shall touch the ears or fall below the top of the eyebrows. It shall be kept above the shirt collar. Cultural and religious exceptions are described below.

    1. Hair shall be no greater than 4 cm in bulk at the top of the head, with the bulk decreasing gradually from the top and blending with the taper-trimmed back and sides. Bulk is defined as the distance that the mass of hair protrudes from the scalp when groomed, as distinct from the length of the hair. Styling shall not present an exaggerated or non-conformist appearance, nor shall it interfere with the proper wearing of headdress. Excessively short hair can detract from a smart and well groomed appearance, however, may be permitted at the discretion of the Commanding Officer.

  1. Sideburns. Shall not extend below the ear lobe, shall be of even width, and shall be taper trimmed and squared off to conform to the overall hair style.

  1. Beards and moustaches. The Commanding Officer will permit all Naval Service (except Royal Marines) male personnel to request to wear full set beards but full set beards and moustaches are not permitted during Militarisation except when for medical or religious reasons. Beards and moustaches shall be kept neatly trimmed especially, in the case of beards, at the lower neck and cheekbones.

    1. When the safety of an individual might be jeopardised by his beard or moustache, such as in the wearing of oxygen or gas masks, it shall be modified in such a fashion as to accommodate the type of equipment to be worn.

    1. Beards or moustaches shall be shaved off if the conditions of Para 8 and 9 cannot be met.

Female Personnel

  1. Hair. Shall be kept neatly groomed and shall not extend below the lower edge of the shirt collar. Long hair should be worn up and properly secured in a neat and tidy fashion using grips, hairpins and nets where appropriate. Varying styles of hair, straight or curled, are permitted within these limits but unnatural hair colours (ie those colours that are not within the colour range of the individual’s natural hair colour) and exaggerated styles, including those with excessive fullness, shortness or extreme height are not permitted. In no case shall the bulk or length of the hair detract from a smart and well-groomed appearance or preclude the proper wearing of naval headdress. Hair ornaments, (including scrunchies, combs and alice bands) shall not be worn. Every effort shall be made to ensure that grips, hairpins and nets used to secure the hair are as unobtrusive as possible and are to be as near as possible to the colour of the hair. Hairstyles shall be secured or styled back from the face; this includes corn braids / corn rows, which should be simple in design and absent of beads and any other adornments. Cultural and religious exceptions are described below.

  1. Make-up. When wearing uniform, or civilian clothes on duty, make-up must be discrete. This shall preclude the use of false eyelashes, heavy eyeliner, brightly coloured eye shadow and excessive facial make-up.

  1. Hosiery. All female personnel wearing blue uniform skirts shall wear plain black tights or stockings. Both tights and stockings are not to exceed 15 denier.

  1. Footwear. Shall be kept clean and polished at all times. Court shoes; height of heel is not to exceed 2 3/4" or 6.5 cm and not to be stiletto. Court shoes are only to be worn with skirts.

  1. Glasses. Shall be of conservative design and colour. Carrying cases shall not be visibly carried in or on uniform dress. Personnel who normally wear glasses may wear either conventionally framed prescription sunglasses or conservatively styled clip-on sunglasses when conditions and circumstances dictate. Mirrored lenses or half silver mirror are not to be worn by personnel in uniform.

  1. Underwear. White or skin coloured underwear conservative in nature is to be worn underneath white shirts, white training shorts and at all times when wearing tropical uniform.

Cultural and Religious Sensitivity

  1. The different cultural patterns of various religious groups are to be respected, especially during moments of religious expression. In assessing attitudes to accommodating such differences, the Naval Service distinguishes between the tenets of devout faith, which shall be allowed where operationally practicable, and the cultural and social customs of a particular group, which may be accommodated where disciplinary prudence permits.

  1. Religious items or accessories (eg a Christian Cross) which are not visible or otherwise apparent are unregulated and may always be worn provided they do not interfere with the proper wear and use of uniform items, accoutrements or equipment.

Wearing of Headdress

  1. The wearing of headdress on different occasions reflects a combination of the cultural etiquette of British society, naval custom and religious practices. As a guideline, the norms of formal etiquette should be followed. Further comments are given in the paragraphs that follow. These highlight the differences between those whose customs require removing the headdress as a sign of respect, especially in religious circumstances; and those who cover the head as a sign of religious respect. In addition:

    1. A male member of the Jewish faith may wear a dark, plain-pattern yarmulke whenever he removes other headdress.

    1. Special details for adherents of the Sikh religion are contained below.


  1. Naval Service personnel who are adherents to the Sikh Religion (Keshadharis) shall wear standard pattern uniforms and adhere to standard Service clothing policy and instructions with the following exceptions:

    1. Hair. The hair and beard may remain uncut, provided that the operational mission and safety are not jeopardised when it is required that individuals wear occupational and operational equipment such as a respirator, oxygen mask, combat/vehicle/flying helmet, hardhat, diving mask etc. When a hazard clearly exists, the hair and/or beard shall be modified to the degree necessary for wearing the required equipment, in order to meet safety requirements.

    1. Religious symbols. In addition to uncut hair, 4 other symbolic requirements of the Sikh religion are authorised for wear by Naval Service personnel with Numbers 1, 2 and 3 uniform dresses. Should conflict arise between the requirement to wear safety or operational items of clothing and equipment and these religious symbols, the manner and location of wearing these symbols shall be adjusted. Commanding Officers retain the right to order the manner of this adjustment as necessary to meet valid safety and operational requirements.

    1. Turban. A turban may be worn by male members with Numbers 1, 2 and 3 uniform dresses. Turbans may also be worn with Action Working Dress and occupational working dress, subject to the safety and operational considerations. When engaged in combat operations, operational training or when serving with peacekeeping or multinational contingents, adherents of the Sikh religion shall, when deemed essential, cover their head with a patka or other customary clothing items over which they shall wear the headdress (including combat helmets) and other items of Service equipment as ordered by the Commanding Officer.

      1. Except as otherwise provided, the turban worn by male personnel and the authorised headdress worn by female personnel shall not be removed while wearing uniform. Similarly, when on duty wearing civilian clothing, a civilian turban and an appropriate civilian woman’s head covering shall not be removed.

      1. The colour of turbans worn by male members shall be, in blue uniform, navy blue with white headband, and white with Navy headband in tropical uniform.

  1. Adherents to the Sikh religion may, subject to the provisions, observe the following 5 symbolic requirements:

    1. Kesh. Leave the hair on the head, face and body uncut.

    1. Kanga. Wear a comb.

    1. Kara. Wear an iron bracelet.

    1. Kirpan. Wear a symbolic dagger with an overall length (including the handle and sheath) not exceeding 23 centimetres (9 inches).

    1. Kaccha. Wear special design knee length underpants.

  1. Method of wear. The following instructions are not intended to detail the method of styling and wearing hair on the head, wearing the comb or winding the turban. Instead, they provide sufficient direction to ensure uniformity of dress amongst Sikh personnel. Accordingly, symbols and associated badges shall be worn as follows:

    1. Turban. Worn in a low, Sikh conventional manner, with the final winding right over left on the forehead.

    1. Cap badge. Worn centred on the front of the turban. The badge shall be locally modified to provide a brooch fastener to secure it to the cloth.

    1. Patka. A traditional Sikh cloth head-covering worn when a turban is not suitable, such as under combat, flying or diving helmets, or during sports or strenuous physical activity.

    1. Kesh (hair). Male personnel shall wear their uncut hair tied in a knot at the crown of the head, and shall secure the hair of the beard under the chin, presenting a close-to-face, groomed appearance. Female personnel shall wear their uncut hair styled in a bun at the rear of the head to facilitate the proper wearing of standard service headdress.

    1. Kanga. (comb). Worn concealed in the hair.

    1. Kara (bracelet). Worn on the right wrist.

    1. Kirpan (dagger). Shall remain sheathed at all times, except for religious occasions and for cleaning purposes. The sheathed kirpan worn under the outer shirt or jacket shall be supported by a black cloth sling, slung from the right shoulder to the left side. Should the kirpan interfere with the wearing of uniform accoutrements or equipment, it may be slung from the left shoulder and worn on the right side.

29. Male. Male Rastafarian hair is to follow the same general rules for other Service personnel in that it is to be neat and tidy and not of an exaggerated nature. If longer than collar length, dreadlocks should be worn in a bun with a net as while on duty and able to be worn with all types of military headdress in such a way that it is compatible with the image of the Royal Navy.
30. Female. Female Rastafarian hair is to follow the same rules for other female personnel.
Muslim Women
31. Muslim women are allowed to wear uniform trousers, rather than a skirt and may wear a hijab except when operational or health and safety considerations dictate otherwise. Long sleeve shirts can be worn with all forms of Service dress. Tracksuit bottoms may be worn for sport. All Naval Service personnel are required to achieve a basic swimming standard as part of their training. Although every effort will be made to ensure that these tests take place in an all female environment, it should be stressed to female Muslim personnel that this may not always be possible.

Annex C to

Chapter 2
Useful websites
British Maritime Doctrine

The Naval Review offers an independent forum to discuss issues of professional interest through a quarterly journal published since 1913.

Navy News online version of the official newspaper of the Royal Navy which has been reporting on all that happens in the Senior Service and the wider community since 1954.

The Royal Navy Website

N A M Rodger:  The Command of the Ocean, A Naval History of Britain, 1649-1815.

Middle volume of his definitive trilogy, The Command of the Ocean describes the rise of Britain to naval greatness, and the central place of the Navy and naval activity in the life of the nation and government. It describes not just battles and cruises but how the Navy was manned, how it was supplied with timber, hemp and iron, how its men (and sometimes women) were fed, and how it was financed and directed. It shows how completely integrated and mutually dependent Britain and the Navy then became. ISBN: 0713994118.

Eric Grove:  The Royal Navy since 1815, A New Short History

This book provides the only up-to-date, short history of the Royal Navy over the last 200 years, synthesizing the new work and latest research on the subject which has radically transformed our understanding of the story of British naval development. Grove offers a concise and authoritative account of Royal Navy policy, structure, technical development and operations from the end of the Napoleonic Wars to the close of the eventful twentieth century. This essential introduction explains how the Royal Navy maintained its pre-eminent position in the nineteenth century and how it coped with the more difficult problems of the twentieth, in times of peace and war. ISBN: 0333721268.

Geoffrey Till:  Seapower, A Guide for the Twenty-First Century

The sea has always been central to human development as a source of resources, and as a means of transportation, information-exchange and strategic dominion. It has provided the basis for mankind's prosperity and security. This is even truer in the early 21st century, with the emergence of an increasingly globalised world trading system. Navies have always provided a way of policing, and sometimes exploiting, the system. In contemporary conditions, navies and other forms of maritime power are having to adapt in order to exert the maximum power ashore in the company of others and to expand the range of their interests, activities and responsibilities. Their traditional tasks still apply but new ones are developing fast. This timely book provides a guide for everyone interested in the changing and crucial role of seapower in the 21st century. Well written & easy to dip into as an introduction to wider issues. ISBN: 0714684368.

Norman Friedman:  Seapower as Strategy, Navies & National Interests.

With his customary clarity Friedman describes the relationship between naval powers and land powers, the naval strategies of the world wars and the Cold War, the impact of technology, and current US naval strategy. Like many naval theorists, he relies heavily on discerning lessons from British experience. He applies those lessons to the United States' situation. This is an outstanding blend of history & strategy, which clearly articulates the past and potential of maritime forces. ISBN: 1557502919.

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