• Thanks for stopping by. Logging in to a registered account will remove all generic ads. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

Segregation in Messes

Canadian.Trucker

Sr. Member
Mentor
Reaction score
0
Points
210
My time in Meaford was excellent for combining ranks together.  Since it is a training base there is a separate section for the SNCOs and Officers to eat, but we eat together away from the Jr ranks.  As well the mess itself is a combined SNCO and Officer mess, however the mess is designed so that each group has their own bar and side to the mess and if anyone wished they could close a set of doors and have their own gathering.  I enjoyed this set up because it allowed me to get to know everyone much better.  I never saw any issue with eating/socializing with SNCOs, and there was also the opportunity to separate from one another if required.
 

Lumber

Army.ca Veteran
Donor
Reaction score
177
Points
680
ArmyVern said:
We save the really good chatter for the drinking messes which are still separate else there may be issues.

See, I can get on board with this. Although some might disagree, I'm sure the XO wouldn't appreciate some of the things I've heard some sailors say over a few pints!
 

Humphrey Bogart

Moderator
Staff member
Directing Staff
Subscriber
Reaction score
4,967
Points
1,360
Canadian.Trucker said:
My time in Meaford was excellent for combining ranks together.  Since it is a training base there is a separate section for the SNCOs and Officers to eat, but we eat together away from the Jr ranks.  As well the mess itself is a combined SNCO and Officer mess, however the mess is designed so that each group has their own bar and side to the mess and if anyone wished they could close a set of doors and have their own gathering.  I enjoyed this set up because it allowed me to get to know everyone much better.  I never saw any issue with eating/socializing with SNCOs, and there was also the opportunity to separate from one another if required.

Some Brit messes I have seen are setup exactly like this.  The dining hall is combined; however, each group has their own separate private drinking area.  From what I saw, this seemed to work fairly well.
 

PuckChaser

Moderator
Staff member
Directing Staff
Mentor
Reaction score
1,763
Points
1,060
I've been to Meaford's mess a few times, and it should be a model of what a combined mess should be. However, its a purpose-built facility, and any place I've seen talking about combining messes, just has one shutting down and taking over a corner of another messes' building.
 

a_majoor

Army.ca Legend
Reaction score
30
Points
560
My understanding is that the various messes in Wolseley barracks will not only be shut down, but demolished, and a small combined mess of some sort will be established in Beaver Hall (the old Drill Hall). From what I remember of the layout, there is room in the former Quartermaster's stores for a small lounge with a central bar and the possibility of dividers or screens to segregate the areas (assuming the Base commander wishes to keep the sports facility/parade square intact).

Or everyone can go across the street to Kelsey's.
 

Jorkapp

Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
From the Blue side of the house: Here in North Bay, the Officers and WO/Sergeants messes were demolished years ago in the late-90's downsizing, and all that is left is a combined mess for both eating and drinking. It's a big enough mess to partition (2 bars, several lounges, and a dance floor), but most if not all functions are all-ranks events.
 

ballz

Army.ca Veteran
Subscriber
Reaction score
426
Points
910
ArmyVern said:
Gagetown, Trenton and Kingston merged their dining messes years ago; no segregated seating ... no issues.

Not sure how long ago that happened in Gagetown but since I've been here (summer 2010, summer 2011, and May 12 - Present) its always been segregated. For breakfast and on the weekends everyone sits in the same dining area, but the seating is segregated by a divider.

What's always irked me is that even in the same dining area, the Officers/SNCO side of the house has nicer chairs and stuff. If we're going to eat in different locations, no problem, but if we're going to share the same room, then the divider and better furniture has got to go. I always feel like a schmuck sitting on the Officer/SNCO side with the better chairs.

I personally have no problems eating in the same room, or at the same table, as anybody else. For my unit, however, I'm glad the officers have their own drinking mess.
 

Rifleman62

Army.ca Veteran
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
70
Points
530
Possibly they moved the furniture from the other two Messes.
 

cupper

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
1
Points
430
Rifleman62 said:
Possibly they moved the furniture from the other two Messes.

That's what they did when the combined messes in Cornwallis. They moved some of the dining room furniture from the Officer's mess down to Champlain hall for the Officers / Snr NCO side of the house.
 

q_1966

Sr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
Lumber said:
So, this will be more of a comment then a question, but maybe it will generate some lively discussion.

CFB Esquimalt, as a cost saving measure, shutdown the cafeteria at the Chief and PO's mess and combined it with that of the wardroom. Fine by me! Do whatever you have to do to save a buck. But apparently, as an Officer, I would be so upset by the sight of a senior NCM eating near me that they have cordoned off the eating area into two sections. They even put in place theselittle fabric walls as dividers so I don't have to gaze upon such unsightly beings as senior NCMs.  :sarcasm: :sarcasm:

Anyone else this as taking the segregation of messes a little too far? It's not even a drinking mess, just a cafeteria for cripes sake! I'd much rather shoot the shit with some of the crusty old chiefs and hear their war stories over dinner then sit in silence with some of the weird and anti social or ultra elitist officers who show up.

Seeing as Officers and Senior NCMs ate at Nellie's Block Galley anyway (as it's too far to go from Naden to the Wardroom & C&PO's mess) and Jr Ranks / Sr NCM's ate at NOTC depending on the training being done. Combined messing will mean less wastage of food (as oppose to all the galleys throwing out the same amount), easier staffing during holidays (some messes close over xmas anyways), and third I hated buttering the officers toast for him (wardroom), put the damn toaster on the other side of the steam line like all the other Messes (NOTC / Nellies Block), Stewards don't have to make Officers beds anymore and it's no longer "full table service" on ship but partial table service, why butter their bread on base.
 

Lumber

Army.ca Veteran
Donor
Reaction score
177
Points
680
Get Nautical said:
and third I hated buttering the officers toast for him (wardroom)

While I think this is getting a little off topic, they butter toast at every breastfast restaurant I've ever been to, and last I checked, any jo-shmo civi can walk into the Wardroom and pay for breakfast.
 

Marauder

Sr. Member
Reaction score
0
Points
210
Thucydides said:
My understanding is that the various messes in Wolseley barracks will not only be shut down, but demolished, and a small combined mess of some sort will be established in Beaver Hall (the old Drill Hall). From what I remember of the layout, there is room in the former Quartermaster's stores for a small lounge with a central bar and the possibility of dividers or screens to segregate the areas (assuming the Base commander wishes to keep the sports facility/parade square intact).

Or everyone can go across the street to Kelsey's.

That's the rumour I have heard since September as well. It's a shame since the JRs has been quite profitable from what I understand, and the O Mess is actually quite nice (though the dues are, ahem, a mite pricey).

Palasad is also another decent option. The unit I am with was at one point parading on Wednesdays to sync with the out of town HQ element, while the rest of the base paraded on Thursday. Since the mess wouldn't open for just a dozen people, off base was the only option to have a quiet tipple with comrades before calling it a night.
 

Gunner98

Army.ca Veteran
Donor
Mentor
Reaction score
2
Points
380
cupper said:
That's what they did when the combined messes in Cornwallis. They moved some of the dining room furniture from the Officer's mess down to Champlain hall for the Officers / Snr NCO side of the house.

Really, the Sr NCO side maybe!  When was this, I closed out the place in 1994.  I remember the bowling lanes in the Sr NCO's mess with human pin-setters. 

As for buttered toast - not every restaurant puts butter on toast since people have allergies and preferences (Denny's, Husky, Irving do not - all of the classy places anyways).
 

Canadian.Trucker

Sr. Member
Mentor
Reaction score
0
Points
210
Simian Turner said:
As for buttered toast - not every restaurant puts butter on toast since people have allergies and preferences (Denny's, Husky, Irving do not - all of the classy places anyways).
To link in with the "Do officers do physical work?" thread - http://forums.army.ca/forums/threads/111664/post-1248543/topicseen.html#new I view putting butter on my toast as physical work and delegate that job to my batman, and if the mood hits me he puts strawberry jam on my toast as well.
 

Michael OLeary

Army.ca Fixture
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
2
Points
430
Canadian.Trucker said:
To link in with the "Do officers do physical work?" thread - http://forums.army.ca/forums/threads/111664/post-1248543/topicseen.html#new I view putting butter on my toast as physical work and delegate that job to my batman, and if the mood hits me he puts strawberry jam on my toast as well.

In the Strathconas, the junior subalterns used to have to go to the Officers' Mess and make the toast for coffee break. probably because all the troops were polishing the officers' saddles for the afternoon polo chukka.
 

The Bread Guy

Moderator
Staff member
Directing Staff
Subscriber
Donor
Reaction score
2,386
Points
1,260
Canadian.Trucker said:
To link in with the "Do officers do physical work?" thread - http://forums.army.ca/forums/threads/111664/post-1248543/topicseen.html#new I view putting butter on my toast as physical work and delegate that job to my batman, and if the mood hits me he puts strawberry jam on my toast as well.
"Have you buttered my toast yet, you dirty little man?
curtis_main_2359898b.jpg

;D
 

Furniture

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
1,150
Points
1,110
I think the need for separate dining facilities died long ago. If the officers and senior NCOs can't handle eating with the men and women they lead what right do they have to lead them?  We aren't the British army of the Zulu wars, and we aren't the RN of Nelson's time. We are all professionals who signed up to do a job, some jobs require we wear shiny gold bars (or pips and crowns now) and some jobs require a few hooks on our sleeves.
 

pbi

Army.ca Veteran
Reaction score
0
Points
410
Michael O'Leary said:
In the Strathconas, the junior subalterns used to have to go to the Officers' Mess and make the toast for coffee break. probably because all the troops were polishing the officers' saddles for the afternoon polo chukka.

We went one worse in 1PPCLI (on the other side of the Base): we used soldiers from the duty company to butter toast and serve coffee at coffee break each day. (Just like we used to use them to serve at the table during mess dinners, and before that as bartenders).
At the time I didn't think much of it, but in retrospect I think it was really legacy behaviour left over from a bygone time and an outdated view of what soldiers are for.
 

Humphrey Bogart

Moderator
Staff member
Directing Staff
Subscriber
Reaction score
4,967
Points
1,360
pbi said:
We went one worse in 1PPCLI (on the other side of the Base): we used soldiers from the duty company to butter toast and serve coffee at coffee break each day. (Just like we used to use them to serve at the table during mess dinners, and before that as bartenders).
At the time I didn't think much of it, but in retrospect I think it was really legacy behaviour left over from a bygone time and an outdated view of what soldiers are for.

Are you sure that was butter on your toast?  From some stories I have heard, I wouldn't be surprised if some other substances made their way onto that bread  >:D
 

George Wallace

Army.ca Dinosaur
Reaction score
4
Points
430
It was common practice in the RCD that the Duty Pers went to both the Officer's Mess and the WO's and Sgt's Mess to prep toast and coffee for the 10:00 hrs Coffee Breaks. 

We used to fight to serve at both Mess' for their Mess Dinners, just for the after dinner 'bonus'.  ;D  Not to mention the booze we would 'syphon off' during the dinners.  But that would be telling.....

Now it is "below the dignity of our soldiers" to so task them, and of course unacceptable under NPF rules, TB rules, and whatever other regulations brought into effect, etc.

Times have changed.
 
Top