Index
 
Entry, Examination, &c., of Assistant Clerks and Clerks, and Assistant Paymasters in the Royal Navy.


Admiralty Circular No. 414,
8 March 1860,

  1. Assistant Clerk. Every candidate, on obtaining a nomination, will be required to pass an examination on board the Flag Ship at Portsmouth, within 3 months of nomination. No candidate will be nominated who is less than 15, or more than 19 years of age.
  2. Candidates will be examined by the Captain and a Naval Instructor of the Flag Ship, assisted by two Paymasters appointed to that duty by the Commander-in-Chief. The examinations will take place on the second Wednesdays in the months of March, June, September and December.
  3. Candidates will be required.-
    1. To produce a certificate of birth, or declaration thereof made before a magistrate.
    2. To be in good health, and fit for the Service, that is free from impediment of speech, defect of vision, rupture or other physical inefficiency.
    3. To write English correctly from dictation, and in a good, legible hand.
    4. To read and translate French.
    5. To have a competent knowledge of Arithmetic, including Vulgar and Decimal fractions.
    6. To have a fair knowledge of Scripture and English History, and of Geography.
  4. If the candidate be found unqualified at his first examination, he may be re-examined on either the first or second subsequent examination days, provided he be not, at the time of such re-examination, beyond the age of 19. Should he fail in passing the second examination, he will be finally rejected.
  5. On passing the required examination, and obtaining a certificate to that effect, the Candidate will at once be appointed by the Admiralty to one of Her Majesty's Ships.
  6. Clerk. An Assistant Clerk having served one year in that capacity, and being 17 years of age, may, under the direction of the Senior Officer present, be examined touching his qualifications for the rating of Clerk, by three Paymasters, in the presence of a Captain or Commander. On this occasion the examining officers are to ascertain that the Candidate has a competent knowledge of Arithmetic, including Vulgar and Decimal fractions, and that he is so far acquainted with the method of keeping and rendering Ship’s Books and Accounts as to enable him efficiently to perform the duties required of a Clerk of one of Her Majesty's Ships.
  7. Should the candidate be found duly qualified, he is to receive a certificate from the Examining Officer to that effect ; and the Officer in command of the Ship in which he is serving may forthwith rate him as Clerk.

  8. A Clerk, when he shall have served one year and a half in that rank, is, under the direction of the Senior Officer present, to be examined by three Paymasters, in the presence of a Captain or Commander. At this examination the Candidate must, in addition to the points mentioned in the preceding articles, show that he has a competent knowledge of the allowance of Provisions to the Fleet, and of the mode of issuing them. First or Second Class Certificates are to be given, according to the merit of the Candidate, or he is to be rejected if found incompetent ; and the period that may elapse from the date of his being so rejected to the date of his passing this intermediate examination shall not be allowed to him as Sea Time. If the requisite number of Officers cannot be obtained, the Candidate may be examined by the Officer in command of the Ship in which he is employed, assisted by such other competent Officers as may be procurable ; but, in such case, he must be re-examined by proper officers on the first opportunity that shall afterwards offer, and if he then passes successfully, he will receive a certificate to that effect, dated back to the day of the professional intermediate examination ; but if he be rejected, he will incur the forfeiture of subsequent service mentioned in the first part of this article.
  9. A Clerk, from the date of his passing the intermediate examination referred to in the preceding article, must continue to serve in that capacity for a further period of one year and a half ; and having completed such further period of service, he may, provided he shall have attained the full age of 21 years, be examined, under the direction of the Senior Officer present, by three Paymasters, in the presence of a Captain or Commander, touching his qualifications for the office of Paymaster of one of Her Majesty's Ships.
  10. At this examination the Candidate must prove his fitness for the various duties which he will be required to perform as Paymaster, particularly as to his knowledge of the relative value of English and Foreign Coins, Weights, and Measures, of the method of calculating the rates of Exchange, and of all other matters appertaining to the Cash transactions of Her Majesty Ships ; and likewise of the mode of receiving, issuing, and accounting for Provisions, Clothing, and Victualling Stores. He must also show that he has a competent knowledge of Arithmetic, including Vulgar and Decimal fractions ; that he is acquainted with the Queen's Regulations and Admiralty Instructions, the Paymaster's Instructions, and with all the Orders that may be in force bearing on the duties of Paymasters of the Royal Navy.

    If the Candidate be found duly qualified, the examining Officers are to give him a First or Second Class Certificate, according to his merit, and the Senior Officer present may appoint him by Commission, dated on the day of the examination, to be Assistant Paymaster of the ship in which he (the Candidate) may at the time be serving.

  11. In the event of an Assistant-Clerk or a Clerk, serving in a Ship so far removed from other ships, that the requisite number of examining Officers cannot be obtained, the examinations under the preceding Articles (6 and 7), are to be conducted by the Officer in command of the ship in which the Candidate may be employed, assisted by such other competent officers as may be procurable at the time ; and on the Candidate passing satisfactorily, the said Officer in command may forthwith rate him in the capacity of Clerk, or grant him an acting order as Assistant Paymaster, as the case may be ; should, however, the Candidate be rejected, he is to revert to the rank he may have held at the time of the provisional examination, and to the pay of that rank, from the date of being so rejected, the period during which he may have acted in the superior rating being only allowed to reckon as Sea Time, for the inferior capacity from which he may have been previously advanced.

This circular is to come into operation on and after 1 June 1860, but its application to Officers now in Her Majesty's Service, is to be limited to Assistant Clerks and Clerks who have not served more than one year in that rating on 1 June 1860.

By Command of their Lordships,
C. Paget,
To all Flag Officers &c.

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