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  The Orkney Branch of the Royal Naval Association meets on the Third

  Thursday of every month. On alternate months the meetings are held
  in the Royal British Legion Clubs Kirkwall and Stromness.
  Please see the notice below for the date and venue of the next meeting.

Memories page. Closing of the Hole in t' wall bar Gibraltar.

The Vault HMS Royal Oak story and video have been moved to the vault.

Also still there the three preserved ships HMS Cavalier, HM Submarine Ocelot and HMS Belfast.

To keep the space on the front page up to date with current information older items will be passed down into the cellar vault for archiving. Press the Vault button, but beware the steps are slippery and the floor is damp, watch out for the spiders and rats and if you stay too long the musty smell will linger on your clothing.

Upside down

This came through on my phone, easy to read when you have learnt to write upside down and back to front. It's something you never forget no matter how long ago it was or how old you get.

Well, I suppose you can all read it, put how quickly? As quick as ordinary writing?

It was always a usfull skill in later days when you could read the papers on the bosses desk when standing in front of it.

Anyway it got me thinking, do RP's or whatever they call them these days have to learn this skill?

For all you ex Radar Plotters here is a short film of RP training at HMS Dryad in the 1970's.

For those interested and especially ex Dryad shipmates there is another short film and a little ditty about HMS Dryad if you scroll down to the bottom of the page.

Nelson well.1


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sailor ad

(A wee tip to avoid mixing the pic with the text: When scrolling down if there is a pic/video in the text it is better to put your mouse arrow outside the green area and use the wheel, otherwise use the right hand side bar to move the page up or down)

(I've added another website link to an organisation dealing with Mesothelioma + Asbestos Awareness (MAACenter) Anyone with questions or concerns can click on from our links page)

This site was last update on Wednesday 6th February 2019

The December meeting was held in the Kirkwall Legion on 6th. The were 7 members present. Xmas cards were exchanged and a short business meeting took place followed by some lively chatter amongst ourselves. All in all a very pleasant evening to mark the end of the year.

Please Note As Per the resolution passed last year we will not be holding meetings over the next 2 months due mainly to weather considerations. Therefore the next meeting will be set for the 7th March at 1930 at the Stromness Legion Club.

Armistice Day 11/11/2018 100 years to the day that marked the end of the fighting and WW1 which by some chance of fate actually fell this year on the Sunday 11th Nov (How moving and convenient is that.) The sun shone bright and the wind was calm in Orkney after a dreadful night of rain. A sign that someone up there was thinking about us so that we could remember in quiet comfort those that died in much more dreadful conditions. And to all those that have died in other conflicts we will remember them also.

Orkney Branch RNA took part in the parades at Kirkwall and Stromness War Memorials where RNA wreaths were laid. Both parades involving many organisations marched off from the relevant British Legion Clubs at 1030.

On Friday the 9th November Stromness Academy held a remembrance commemoration which saw 4th, 5th and 6th year pupils and teachers parade from the school to the Stromness War Memorial to lay a wreath and conduct a short service. They were lead by members of the Stromness Pipe Band. Joining the parade were the Standards of the Stromness Legion, The Orkney Branch RNA and the Royal Standard. Members of the Legion and other organisations took part to give a memorial and greater realistic impression to the pupils.

On Sat 27th Oct Members and there parteners enjoyed the branch annual anniversay dinner at the Ferry Inn Stromness. Following a lovely meal some enjoyable chit chat and not to much lamp swinging to place. A great evening out which confirms the branch despite falling numbers in recent years is still going strong.

TS Thorfinn Orkney Sea Cadets provided a splendid Trafalgar Dinner on Friday 19th Oct.
A traditional menu included a Melon balls and parma ham starter, Roast beef main course and Poached pears and chocolate sauce dessert, finishing off with coffee and port. The toast of the day was “A willing foe and sea room”. Speeches from historian Brian Budge BEM and Harvey Johnston OIC Vice convener were followed by a raffle and auction to raise funds for the Sea Cadets.

The annual remembrance ceremony for the sinking of HMS Royal Oak to place on Sunday 14th October. A service took place at the garden on remembrence at Scapa conducted by Lt Cdr Mike Browning RN(Rtd) followed by wreath laying over the wreck. Members of the HMS Royal Oak Association came from near and far. RNA Orkney branch was in attendance to lay a wreath along with the Lord Lieutenant, RN Northern Diving Group and The Royal British Legion Scotland along with many other groups and individual.

The 2nd August 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of the first landing of an aircraft on a ships deck whilst underway. Edwin Dunning landed a Sopwith Pup on the deck of HMS Furious in Scapa Flow on 2nd August 1917 thus paving the way for the aircraft carrier age. Unfortunately he never lived to see it as on his second attempt a few days later his aircraft lost power over the deck and landed heavily, it was then was swept overboard by strong winds killing him in the process. A plaque erected on the 75th anniversary at Swanbister the closest point of land to the event has been eroded by the weather, with 100 years past since the landing a new weather resistant plaque will be unveiled today at Scapa memorial garden by RN personnel, HMS Queen Elizabeth will be present in the Flow this morning and a flypast is due at around 1140.

HMS Vanguard 1917. 7th-9th July A busy weekend of commemoration has just concluded with events taking place over the wreck site, Lyness Cemetery and culminating in a service at St Magnus Cathedral to coinside with the exact moment in time at 2320 100 years on from when an explosions onboard the ship anchored in Scapa Flow set off a series of explosions destroying the ship in seconds, 840 sailors were lost in the single most disastrous non enemy accident in Royal Naval history. Officers and members of the Royal Navy (Including some current HMS Vanguard's ships company) and Royal Marine bandsmen were in Orkney to take part along with dignitaries, officials from the Government, Orkney Islands Council and over 40 descendants and family members of those lost.


L to R. Mr Walter Crosbie, Mrs Celia Green and Mr Ken Bannerman Chairman, Trustee and Founder of the charity 'Airfields Of Britain Conservation Trust'.

Shipmate Ian MacDonald played the Lament while wreaths were laid during the ceremony of remembrance at the Vanguard memorial Lyness War Graves Cemetery.

Vanguard memorial.

A rare photo of a PO and CPO smiling

PO and Chief smiling

This little skit by Bird and Fortune is brilliant, a must watch to the end. OK it's a couple of years old now but still very funny and dare I say still relevant.

average person to sailor

Now it depends on where your loyalties lie which one of these you deem to be the truest statement. Or you may feel both have equal merit?

Well, Well how I remember those Friday afternoon divisions and faces and places from the past. The married quarters, the back lane, the Golden Lion and Red Lion (The Beast). I had the chance on several occasions to show a few visitors around Southwick House.

Anyway my concern is did the officer at 30sec every find the person who was absent and unaccounted for??? Naughty to skiving off divisions, Oh hang on a minute??

As an added bonus to the above I can remember (Although I can't remember his name) The Captian, who was a keen horseman wanted to do a divisions on horseback. This work out well whilst doing the inspections but as he took up post by the saluting dias for the march past the Royal Marine Band struck up with Hearts of Oak, the horse reared up on it's hind legs and legged it down the road with the skipper and out of sight. Well you can imagine the reaction from the parade ground. Even the band had to stop playing (Or found it impossible). Step forward the
1st Lt who brought us all to order and the march passed took place with him taking the salute. I think everyone including the captain found it funny. And you know what he never tried it again.

Here is a short advert to encourage people to learn English

Even if you have seen it before it always raises a laugh and as an ex Coastguard myself those very words can send a shiver up your spine.

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