The Queen’s Messengers have to surely have one of the most plum courier jobs in the nation. Employed by the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, their work in delivering leading secret and essential documents (or certainly any other kind of material which is deemed essential for use by a diplomatic mission), is shrouded in mystery and goes back hundreds of years.
The History of the Country’s Top Courier Jobs
Appointed back in 1485 by King Richard III, John Norman is reported to be the country’s very first official King’s Messenger, although it is Charles II who is typically credited as having set up the 1st team of messengers to act on his behalf. In order to show that the four royal courtiers who had been acting for him have been performing so under his authority, he broke a bowl which was embossed with four silver greyhounds. He gave a single piece to every single of the men, and it is the silver greyhound which has been the symbol of the service ever because.
The Diplomatic Bag
As they go about their organization, the people who undertake these leading courier jobs carry their important mail in what is generally identified as the diplomatic bag, despite the fact that in reality it could be packaged in any quantity of various techniques. So long as it is marked as getting subject to diplomatic immunity, then according to the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, it can not be opened or detained by customs officials and the contents are not topic to any import taxes. Even even though, in numerous cases, the Queen’s Messengers travel on regular commercial flights, the Diplomatic Bag (which is sealed with a tamper-proof seal and has its own diplomatic passport) can’t be opened, searched, x-rayed or even weighed. In some circumstances, the bag may even be chained to the courier’s wrist until he hands it more than at his final location. Even the Queen’s pre-recorded Christmas Day speech is sent about the globe in the diplomatic bag.
As thrilling as they may sound, the possibilities to land a single of these courier jobs are, not surprisingly, restricted. The Foreign and Commonwealth Office figures on the number of Queen’s Messengers is sketchy, but a Lords Hansard publication dated June 1995 stated that there had been 27 in post at that time, including a superintendent and two messenger escorts. The expense of overseas travel and staff administration for these people was estimated to be about £3 million in 1995/6. A document which seems on the Foreign and Commonwealth Office site and is presumably dated some time right after February 2005, meanwhile, indicates that 15 were employed. In the period from 1st January 2004 to 19th February 2005, these people were said to undertake 660 journeys and they are mentioned to travel to 77 various worldwide places. The job description for the Queen’s Messengers is outlined as follows:
* To ensure that all material is safe in all respect by examination of diplomatic bags, official labels, ties and seals conform with the Vienna Convention
* Prior to undertaking any journey to make certain all documentation (including passports, visa, waybill, airline tickets and travel cards) are valid for the Journey and adequately safeguarded at all instances
* Establish the bona fides and authority of the individual due to take charge of any classified material/diplomatic bags in line with Security procedures
* In emergencies, take appropriate action to re-establish a journey and safeguard the classified consignment without having delay
Applying For the Country’s Prime Courier Jobs
Unlike most courier jobs, you happen to be not most likely to see 1 of the positions as a Queen’s Messenger advertised in your regional newspaper. Reports suggest that they are chosen from amongst the ranks of retired army officers, but of course only those with entirely untarnished records would be regarded!