Messing on Royal Navy Warships

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C.P.O.S, P.O.S, and Writers

The Master-at-Arms, the Naval Schoolmaster, and the Writers, including the Boy Writers, are to mess together.

2. The other chief petty officers are either to mess together or with the petty officers, as may be convenient.

Cooks of Messes

At the Captain's discretion, a sufficient number of Ordinary Seamen of each watch are to be attached to these messes to do the work of cooks of the messes.

Ship's Steward and Cooper Ratings

The Ship's Steward, Cooper, Second Ship's Steward, Ship's Steward's Assistant, and Ship's Steward's Boy are not to be allowed to form a mess together, but are to mess with the Chief Petty Officers or Petty Officers (Seaman Class). On no account is the bread room, or any other part of the ship, except where the men by the customs and regulations of the Service are permitted to live, to be used as a mess place.

E.R.A. and Electrician Ratings

If there are two or more Chief or other Engine-Room Artificers in a ship, they are to be allowed to form a separate mess in the place which will be set apart for the purpose; and a Stoker is to be allowed to attend upon them as cook of the mess, and to keep the place clean and in order; the man so employed is to be relieved from ordinary duties in the engine-room. Chief Electricians and Electricians, when borne in His Majesty's ships, are to mess with the Seaman Class Chief Petty Officers, and not with the Engine-Room Artificers.

The Mechanicians and Chief Stokers are to mess separately from the other chief petty officers in ships where separate messes are provided; in other cases they are to mess with the Seaman Class Chief Petty Officers, and not with the Engine-Room Artificers.


While it is to be clearly understood that all chief petty officers are responsible for their own hammocks, Chief Engine-Room Artificers and Engine-Room Artificers, Chief Electricians and Electricians may have the option of employing hammock-men as provided by Article 1483.

Meal Hours

The "recognised" meal hours were five in number, and the aggregate time allowed for them was 3 hours 35 minutes. The routine of meals was, as far as possible, as follows:

5.0 a.m. to 5.35 a.m. Lash up and stow hammocks. Issue cocoa.
8.0 a.m. to 8.45 a.m. Breakfast. "Clean."
12.0 noon to 1.15 p.m. Dinner.
4.15 p.m. to 4.45 p.m. Tea. Shift clothing.
7.30 p.m. to 8.0 p.m. Supper.

At sea, the ration of cocoa is to be issued to the morning watch after mustering, and to the remainder of the ship's company after hammocks have been stowed.

2. The Captain is to detail a Lieutenant to go round the mess decks daily when the dinners are served. This officer is to ask if there are any complaints as to dinners, and he is to see that the messes are aware of any men being away on duty, on watch, in boats, &c. Care is to be taken that his visit does not interfere with the general comfort of the men during the dinner hour.

Meals for Guards and Duty Men

To enable the reliefs for guards and duty men to obtain their meals without inconvenience, the following routine is to be observed, so far as possible:

Reliefs to take their meals as follows. Relieve at.
Breakfast at 7.30 a.m. 7.55 a.m.
Dinner " noon 0.30 p.m.
Tea 3.30 p.m. 4.0 p.m.
Supper " 7.30 p.m. 8.0 p.m.