The Gospel According To Conscription


In 1960 Conscription to join any of the three major services ended which was a real shame as I am sure that certain criminal elements would be less than they really are today – who knows?  Someone passed to me this amusing piece of scripture for my GG Column.  Many apologies for the spelling of the scriptures.

And it came to pass that there was conscription throughout the land and Erkious son of Pilotious having reached the age of manhood, was commanded by the high priests of the land to depart from out of the house of his father and go unto a high place in a far off land called Squarebashingcamp.

Now when he arrived in Squarebashingham the servants of the high priests called enciose seized him and took him into a temple called storanious whence they clothed him in rough blue attire, gave unto him shirts, socks, tunics and footwear of the Gods squarebashing boots, sundry webbing straps and heavy packs for his back and a great-coat against the weather that would prevail upon him.  The enciose said unto him, ‘Take this, polish it like the sun and wear it.’  Henceforth these things are in thy charge and shall be called Kitious Airmenious for the use of.

For this day thou has made thy mark, yea, even in eleven fifty five it came to pass that in the middle of the first night, when it was yet dark, there did come the sound of whistles and bugles.  And at once he awakened, he and his companions who were dwelling with him were sorely afraid and they were commanded by enciose with a loud voice and strange tongue to


Which being translated means ‘Arise for the morning has come.’  And they came unto a temple Gymconium where was passing a strange man called Physicutis Trainious Instructicus. And he did command Erkious and his brethren  ‘Shunn’, and he was exceedingly cruel and commanded them to ‘jump and stretch their bodies where they had never been stretched before.  They did touch four sides of the walls and back again many times over and Erkious was sore afraid and did groan in his heart.

Now when they had eaten they were led by their Enciose to a hot stoned place name Squaricus and there the high priest called the Flightious |Sargeantious and they did command them ‘March’, and they marched and marched and he did beat his chest and shouted out ‘Shower’.  Many were sorely tried and for their sins were made to weep and wail or to work long hours.  Notwithstanding many passed and they did well in the sight of Flightious Sargeantious and some did worship the Gods and went not back into streetus civilious.

But Erkious returned to the land of his father, where the bugle and whistle sounded no more and he was no longer dressed in rough blue attire and he was exceedingly chuffed and peace once more reigned in his heart.

Ah!  I remember it quite well – being posted to Liverpool a square bashing camp nearby in the midst of winter was no laughing matter and to be quite frank with you – it was hell on earth.


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