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  • FIRST POST
    loulou88
    16 year old son starting his army training help!
    • #1
    • 15th Aug 08, 9:12 PM
    16 year old son starting his army training help! 15th Aug 08 at 9:12 PM
    My 16 year old son starts his army training in 2 weeks ,over 700 miles from home.
    Has anybody got any tips for him or any ideas what may be handy for him to take with him apart from the list the army gave him? Any tips would help.
    They said take about £50 in money any ideas if this is enough?
    I think I'm worrying because he will be so far from home. I won't be taking him to the camp like some of the other families of new starters.
    Should he take his possesions in a suitcase of a large holdall does it matter?



    Thought it would help if I added that he is going to Winchester
    Last edited by loulou88; 22-08-2008 at 8:03 PM. Reason: adding text
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
Page 1
    • cheepskate
    • By cheepskate 15th Aug 08, 10:07 PM
    • 1,598 Posts
    • 2,793 Thanks
    cheepskate
    • #2
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:07 PM
    • #2
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:07 PM
    Hi

    Our son joined the RAF just under 9 months ago.

    Don't worry he will be fine, our son made his own way there, he felt ok about it, it was me that worried.
    I would give himt he £50.00 but take his bank details incase he needs any more, it can be put in the same day as he can take it out , if you do it over the counter

    From what i can remember our son had to buy an iron and iron board, and we just put extra into his account .

    Dont think there was anything else they needed . Holdall or case any really , they keep it in a large locker once they are there and only use it on leave .

    What i would suggest is make sure he has plenty money in his phone, as they do get lonely while they adjust and it is good at the beginning to be able to talk to friends / family

    Hope it all goes well
    Last edited by cheepskate; 15-08-2008 at 10:09 PM.
    • McKneff
    • By McKneff 15th Aug 08, 10:10 PM
    • 36,782 Posts
    • 47,471 Thanks
    McKneff
    • #3
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:10 PM
    • #3
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:10 PM
    good for him = and good luck to him. I know he is only a bairn but i bet you are really proud of him.
    make the most of it, we are only here for the weekend.
    and we will never, ever return.
    • downs523
    • By downs523 15th Aug 08, 10:13 PM
    • 750 Posts
    • 312 Thanks
    downs523
    • #4
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:13 PM
    • #4
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:13 PM
    get a hair cut, he will have to get one there and the babrbers on camps arnt very good. he will need a decent iron, not a cheap one as he will be using it near enough every day. ironing board would help too but not for transport getting there. when i joined we got paid cash weekly for the first month so he should be ok with cash. apart from that if hes got everythng on the kit list he should be fine.

    forgot to say, remember your phone charger lol
  • Jamesb15uk
    • #5
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:17 PM
    • #5
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:17 PM
    Hi, I hope I can offer some calming advice.

    I'm 23 now, and have completed a few years service. My younger brother alex, also 16, is just about to start training aswell.

    As hard as this must be to hear from a parents point of view, try and relax as much as possible. The kit list will give him virtually everything he needs, and anything else they need will be given to them, or they'l all go off on little jollies down to the shops together to get it.

    If they have said £50 is all thats needed I imagine that will be fine, thats just going to be pocket money after all. In the army, especially when your young, you just dont need money in the same way as real life. Its just for a few coke's in the bar etc. Until they get access to their first pay.

    I'd recommend a holdall for his things, that way it can fold away nicely under his bed or in his wardrobe, and it probably a bit easier to carry.

    It must be hard and strange thinking of him being so far away. But try to be consolidated by knowing he willl be really well looked after by his corporals and sergeants and most of all by the best mates he'll ever have.
    • downs523
    • By downs523 15th Aug 08, 10:24 PM
    • 750 Posts
    • 312 Thanks
    downs523
    • #6
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:24 PM
    • #6
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:24 PM
    what training regiment is he going to?
  • loulou88
    • #7
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:29 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Aug 08, 10:29 PM
    a heavy steam iron is on his list to take with him.
    I have set up phone calls with vodaphone. I just pay 7 a month. He can ring me ( his mum) his brother his sister his girlfeind and one of his friends for FREE so I wont have to worry too much but i'll put some credit on his phone. Thanks I had forgot about that thanks
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • Cat695
    • #8
    • 16th Aug 08, 1:28 AM
    • #8
    • 16th Aug 08, 1:28 AM
    And Loulou Don't worry about him ok! he will be in good hands

    He will be well looked after, fed very well (though very little sleep for a few weeks) i can put a bet on him ringing up saying he wants to come home, so make sure he sticks it out (all recruits find the change hard to adapt to at first) but after a few weeks when he gets into the routine he will start to love it.......then i can bet he will be ringing you up about the weapon firing he's done and having to go into the gas chamber (all fun stuff)

    You should be proud of your son for doing this as he is about to embark on a potentially exciting change in his life that will see him doing things most people only dream about and the best bit getting paid to do it!!!
    • Sparky29
    • By Sparky29 16th Aug 08, 6:15 AM
    • 282 Posts
    • 120 Thanks
    Sparky29
    • #9
    • 16th Aug 08, 6:15 AM
    • #9
    • 16th Aug 08, 6:15 AM
    Fifty pounds is enough. I know it sounds stupid but as he is only 16 he needs to open a bank account with a cashpoint card and take it with him. On every training camp there will be a cashpoint and a shop (Spar) selling everything he will possibly need so you don't have to send him away with a 6 months supply of toothpaste and soap etc.
  • jannerXI
    I take it from the details you've given that he is off to AFC (Harrogate) and, if you haven't received some form of joining instruction, then you will so shortly. I was on the permanent staff there a few years ago but things haven't changed hugely as far as I'm aware.

    You will also be invited to attend a briefing when you drop him off and I really recommend that you go if you can. I know that travelling 700 miles is not so easy but it's a great chance to meet his instructors, see the facilities etc and you can confirm how much he needs until you can see him again at parent's day some four weeks later or so. You will also be given the platoon commander's phone number so you can keep in touch if your son causes you any concern during his training.

    Generally, the lads only call when they are sad and are generally back to themselves again a few minutes after the call. So if you do get a string of unhappy calls or nothing at all, feel free to call the staff to ensure that he is okay. This is quite normal and wont have any affect on how he is treated by the staff - in fact they really appreciate parents who see themselves as part of the training team; providing extra support during the tough days and not taking everything the lads say at face value.

    Don't worry with regards to suitcase v holdall, he will be issued with military versions quite soon after arriving and the civilian version is generally used for items that can't go in his locker.

    Harrogate is a great site and filled with some of the best instructors the Army has to offer - I hope that he, and you, enjoy his time there.

    Kind regards,

    J
  • loulou88
    thanks
    good for him = and good luck to him. I know he is only a bairn but i bet you are really proud of him.
    Originally posted by anniehanlon
    yes i'm so proud he seems all grown up but still my little boy.
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • loulou88
    haircut
    get a hair cut, he will have to get one there and the babrbers on camps arnt very good. he will need a decent iron, not a cheap one as he will be using it near enough every day. ironing board would help too but not for transport getting there. when i joined we got paid cash weekly for the first month so he should be ok with cash. apart from that if hes got everythng on the kit list he should be fine.

    forgot to say, remember your phone charger lol
    Originally posted by downs523
    oh no I had forgot all about that I will take him to the barbers the day before he goes phone charger yes I have put that on list thanks.
    He will hve to buy an ironing board when he gets there.
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • loulou88
    great thanks
    Hi, I hope I can offer some calming advice.

    I'm 23 now, and have completed a few years service. My younger brother alex, also 16, is just about to start training aswell.

    As hard as this must be to hear from a parents point of view, try and relax as much as possible. The kit list will give him virtually everything he needs, and anything else they need will be given to them, or they'l all go off on little jollies down to the shops together to get it.

    If they have said 50 is all thats needed I imagine that will be fine, thats just going to be pocket money after all. In the army, especially when your young, you just dont need money in the same way as real life. Its just for a few coke's in the bar etc. Until they get access to their first pay.

    I'd recommend a holdall for his things, that way it can fold away nicely under his bed or in his wardrobe, and it probably a bit easier to carry.

    It must be hard and strange thinking of him being so far away. But try to be consolidated by knowing he willl be really well looked after by his corporals and sergeants and most of all by the best mates he'll ever have.
    Originally posted by Jamesb15uk
    thanks ever so much your nice reply has made me feel a whole lot better it is such a long way from home I'm sure he'll be fine and learn alot. It is just a mum thing worrying. good luck to alex who knows they might even meet each other on training. thanks
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • loulou88
    what training regiment is he going to?
    Originally posted by downs523
    he is going in the signals taining at winchester
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • loulou88
    oooh homesick
    And Loulou Don't worry about him ok! he will be in good hands

    He will be well looked after, fed very well (though very little sleep for a few weeks) i can put a bet on him ringing up saying he wants to come home, so make sure he sticks it out (all recruits find the change hard to adapt to at first) but after a few weeks when he gets into the routine he will start to love it.......then i can bet he will be ringing you up about the weapon firing he's done and having to go into the gas chamber (all fun stuff)

    You should be proud of your son for doing this as he is about to embark on a potentially exciting change in his life that will see him doing things most people only dream about and the best bit getting paid to do it!!!
    Originally posted by Cat695
    I will have to be brave and tell him to be the same. I know he will be homesick, but I'm not sure who will be worse me or him.
    I have warned him he will be asking to come home, so he is more prepared.
    I have to realise hes not my little boy any more, but my young man.
    I wish I had the chance to do what he is going to do. Lucky lad
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • loulou88
    Fifty pounds is enough. I know it sounds stupid but as he is only 16 he needs to open a bank account with a cashpoint card and take it with him. On every training camp there will be a cashpoint and a shop (Spar) selling everything he will possibly need so you don't have to send him away with a 6 months supply of toothpaste and soap etc.
    Originally posted by Sparky29
    He has his bank and card all sorted and I have the details so I can put money in if he needs it. thanks
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • loulou88
    oh no !
    I take it from the details you've given that he is off to AFC (Harrogate) and, if you haven't received some form of joining instruction, then you will so shortly. I was on the permanent staff there a few years ago but things haven't changed hugely as far as I'm aware.

    You will also be invited to attend a briefing when you drop him off and I really recommend that you go if you can. I know that travelling 700 miles is not so easy but it's a great chance to meet his instructors, see the facilities etc and you can confirm how much he needs until you can see him again at parent's day some four weeks later or so. You will also be given the platoon commander's phone number so you can keep in touch if your son causes you any concern during his training.

    Generally, the lads only call when they are sad and are generally back to themselves again a few minutes after the call. So if you do get a string of unhappy calls or nothing at all, feel free to call the staff to ensure that he is okay. This is quite normal and wont have any affect on how he is treated by the staff - in fact they really appreciate parents who see themselves as part of the training team; providing extra support during the tough days and not taking everything the lads say at face value.

    Don't worry with regards to suitcase v holdall, he will be issued with military versions quite soon after arriving and the civilian version is generally used for items that can't go in his locker.

    Harrogate is a great site and filled with some of the best instructors the Army has to offer - I hope that he, and you, enjoy his time there.

    Kind regards,

    J
    Originally posted by jannerXI
    He asked to go to Harrogate. He didnt get in there ,he got Winchester.
    This is a great shame as it would make it easy for me visiting as my parents live an hour from there. I could have possibly taken him too. Or even granny could have taken him. We live on the Isle of Lewis in the outer Hebridies.
    There is no way I can afford to take him down to Winchester or visit after 6 weeks. It is going to take me all my time to pay to go to his passing out parade after 23 weeks. I' m still not sure I will have enough it is 26 ferry 15 bus then 356 train and then taxi to camp then a b & b. I think I may have to check out the megabus.
    This is the worse thing the heartbreaking thing realy.
    He is 16 and will have no one to visit after 6 weeks when he will need it.
    I am a single parent and only work part time as I have a younger daughter to look after.

    I so wish that he had gone to Harrogate.

    He even has a ferry 3 hours and an hours travel (they are picking him up from ferry) to take his oath then travel home again in 1 day. This is ok but the other travel is bad
    He has to leave here on fiday to get too Winchester camp on Sunday but as this is not possible he will be there on Saturday evening a day before all the others and no parent with him. This makes me very sad. I dont think there is anything I can do though.
    At least at Harrogate if I couldn't get there granny or aunty could visit him.
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • Cat695
    He can come home after 6 weeks from winchster as they get a long weekend.....and they will pay for his travel home

    and its probably better you don't take him...let him start his new life without his mum (he'll feel a little more relaxed without you there trust me)

    Not only that he will make friends while he's there so will NEVER be alone (in the army you make friends for life)

    anyway Winchester is a lovely place and the camp is pretty decent and has some great facilities for the recruits (i used to be an instructor there)

    Your right he is a man now and you will see your boy turn into a independant man (so make him do his own ironing when he gets home hehe)

    Just so you know you can ring the training team to see how he is getting on (many times did i talk to mums and dads on the phone) they will answer any questions you have ok
  • loulou88
    He can come home after 6 weeks from winchster as they get a long weekend.....and they will pay for his travel home

    and its probably better you don't take him...let him start his new life without his mum (he'll feel a little more relaxed without you there trust me)

    Not only that he will make friends while he's there so will NEVER be alone (in the army you make friends for life)

    anyway Winchester is a lovely place and the camp is pretty decent and has some great facilities for the recruits (i used to be an instructor there)

    Your right he is a man now and you will see your boy turn into a independant man (so make him do his own ironing when he gets home hehe)

    Just so you know you can ring the training team to see how he is getting on (many times did i talk to mums and dads on the phone) they will answer any questions you have ok
    Originally posted by Cat695

    I'm a bit unsure about the 6 weeks coming home.
    He so far has been told he can only have a travel warrant home at xmas not the 6 weeks? Is this right I kno he will love to come home but it takes 2 days to get home and then 2 weeks to get back again is it worth it and how long is a long weekend?
    I have just been sent a web link to the army web showing the camp wow i'm impressed my son said "well smart" so thumbs up so far.
    lots of small steps
    will get you a long way
    bsc 140
  • niccy
    have you checked all different train fares/discounts possible coz that sounds alot

    and good luck to the boy
    living on the "edge"
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