By Jason Moore

ONE of the highlights of the social calendar in Majorca are the cocktail parties hosted by the officers of a visiting Royal Navy warship. Now, it appears that the Royal Navy has decided to axe these receptions to save money. Now, I can´t see a couple of beers and a sausage roll resolving Britain´s defence budget shortfall but I can see the move doing Britain plenty of harm. It is not only the expatriate community who like attending these events. I know for a fact that the local authorities also enjoy them.

Also, it gives the Royal Navy a chance to “Fly the Flag” and show off their ships, because afterall they are paid for by the tax-payer and these events are one of the few opportunities the public gets to see the Royal Navy at its best. With defence cuts on the horizon all three armed services must ensure that they are clearly “visible” and not shut-off from public view. I am sure that the Royal Navy can find other ways to save money; like cancelling one of the two aircraft carriers which cost a cool two billion pounds each. It is easy for Civil Servants at the Ministry of Defence to make cost cuts but what they probably don´t understand is the effect the move will have on the Royal Navy; cocktail parties of this type are worth their weight in gold.