Memorandum from the Reserve Forces' and
Cadets' Associations (10 October 2000)
Resulting from the Future Structure Study the
RFCA title was introduced and RFCA boundaries were aligned with
the Government Offices for the Regions in England. No changes
were made in Scotland, Northern Ireland or Wales. While staff
and operating cost reductions affected all RFCAs, the main change
was a decision to merge the adjoining RFCAs in the South East
and Eastern Wessex, with the county of Dorset transferring to
the re-named Wessex RFCA. A new Association for the South East
opened its main office in Aldershot in September 2000. HCDC received
a letter from MoD recently outlining these changes.
In addition a manpower review led to staff savings
in all RFCAs.
The reshaping will save £891K
per annum in running costs.
Our new title "Reserve Forces'
and Cadets' Association" describes better what we do in support
of all three Services and the Cadet Movement.
The Executive Committee of the Council
of RFCAs took the decision last summer to invite Chairman Sea
Cadet Association and Commandant Air Cadets to join the Committee.
They both accepted and Vice Admiral Sir Jonathan Tod Chairman
Sea Cadet Association accepted an invitation to join the Reserve
Forces' and Cadets' Advisory Committee (RFCAC) for its biannual
meetings under the chairmanship of Minister AF. (Commandant Air
Cadets was already a member of RFCAC).
RFCAs have similarly extended invitations
to representatives of the Sea Cadets and Air Training Corps at
their (Regional) level.
The Associations have long been concerned that
their Regulations dated from 1978 and that financial instructions
had not kept pace with the introduction of delegated budgets.
Both NAO (1989) and the DIA (1995) remarked upon the lack of current
guidance. Stemming from SDR, which directed that the Associations
"must be kept up to date . . . to reflect the need to enhance
the lines of accountability, responsibility and delegated authority
. . ." a study into The Future Structure of TAVRAs [RFCAs]
provided the impetus to draw up a collection of complementary
documents which will guide the RFCAs for the future:
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)
between HQ LAND, acting as the Lead Service Headquarters, and
the Council of RFCAs was signed on 23 April 1999. In it are defined
the roles and duties of the RFCAs within the provisions of the
Reserve Forces Act 1996 (RFA 96).
RFCA Regulations 2000, updating previous
regulations of 1978, were signed in Defence Council Order of 22
A Financial Memorandum sets out the
conditions under which HQ LAND pays its Grants in Aid to the RFCAs.
The Command Secretary and Chairman of the Council of RFCAs signed
this on 14 December 1999.
The Works Management Manual has been
updated and reissued.
A paper of guidance on the Budgetary
Arrangements that underpin the new organisation following TA restructuring
and the dissolution of Reserves Branch was agreed at the Land
Command Board in December 1999. Most importantly this has given
Chairman of the Council of RFCAs a seat on CinC's Land Command
Board and the Chairmen of each RFCA a seat on their local GOC's
Guidance from the Office of the Commissioner
for Public Appointments was incorporated within RFCA Regulations
2000 and the Schemes of Association on 1 April 2000.
The thirteen RFCAs' membership totals 1,830.
There are 340 staff employed countrywide.
As a result of the changes stemming from the
implementation of SDR 67 TA units moved location and a total of
205 changed their titles. The RFCAs provided "get-you-in-services"
for each move and/or change.
The outturn for FY 1999-2000 was £78.6
This was spent on:
Capital Works £11.0 million
Support to Units £ 3.7 million
(This sum represents the grants made to the establishment,
Band, local Recruiting and Employer Liaison).
RFCA costs £ 9.8 million
(This sum includes the staff salaries, members
travel costs and office running costs for the 13 RFCAs)
A total expenditure of £5.17 million was
spent on recruiting and publicity in combination with Commander
Recruiting Group at HQ AG. This expenditure was channelled into
raising public awareness of the continuing need for Reserve Forces,
especially TA, through a national TV campaign in February/March
1999 and TA Open Days in March 1999 and March 2000 and also into
specific national and local recruit marketing campaigns targeting
known deficiencies in the Army Medical Services (Volunteers) and
The SDR imperative to make Reserve Forces available
and usable has focussed on the needs of better liaison with employers.
The National Employers Liaison Committee initiates work at MoD
level and the RFCAs through local contacts, teams and working
groups have the responsibility for improving liaison with employers.
RFCAs have continued to manage the Volunteer
estate on behalf of all Services; provide support to the Cadets,
ACF and ATC; carry out local recruit marketing in support of TA
units and RAuxAF units when requested to do so and promote the
volunteer, both reservist and cadet adult instructor, throughout
the civilian community.
The reduction in the size of the TA freed 87
Territorial Army Centres (TAC) for disposal with a further 27
TACs retained for cadet use only.
The approximate value of these sites was £102
The Defence Estate (DE) organisation has the
responsibility for disposing of surplus TACs once they have been
vacated and handed over. DE then contacts the Property Advisers
to the Civil Estate (PACE), who in turn deal with the local agents.
Disposals have progressed well in some areasnotably
North of England, Yorkshire and the Humber and Lowland. In others
planning permission and the provision of alternative accommodation
for Cadets have led to delays.
SDR ON CADETS
SDR contained a guarantee to cadets that no
detachment would be made homeless.
54 displaced cadet detachments from all three
Services require re-housing and a sum of £12 million has
been provided for this purpose.
Re-housing is a slow business. New sites are
difficult to acquire, especially in urban areas. The process of
forming a cadet enclave on an existing site, which is to be disposed
of, is lengthy requiring as it does planning consent and DE authorisation.
The difficulties associated with re-housing
cadets are being overcome but do delay TAC disposals.
The reduction in the size of the TA, especially
in the rural areas, has led to a reduction in the resources available
to support ACF training.