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Southampton Royal Naval Officer's Association


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                                                                                       © SRNOA - December 2011

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Held at

The Dolphin Hotel (Mercure Southampton Centre) 34-35 High Street Southampton SO14 2HN  in The Jane Austin Room



To enjoy a series of lectures  during the winter months given by top level speakers. A balance of subjects is maintained between current Service topics and operations, naval historical subjects, sailing and adventurous activities.



Monday18th February 2019

“A Very Warm Time; HMS Clio and British naval operations in Mesopotamia, 1914-1918” by Andrew Choong Han Lin

Although far from the primary theatres of the First World War, the Middle East featured prominently in British and German strategic calculations. In conjunction with operations in the Eastern Mediterranean the British sought to develop an offensive from the Persian Gulf region. To support this ambitious undertaking, control of the rivers cutting across the region was essential. The travails of the land forces engaged in these arduous campaigns is relatively well-known; less so are the operations of the Royal Navy which was compelled to make do with a variety of old and second hand ships before more suitable craft were delivered in the latter half of the conflict. This talk aims to chart the fortunes of this naval effort, as seen through the experiences of the crew of HMS Clio.


Monday 18th March 2019

"Submarine Escape and Rescue Training, The Submarine Parachute Assistance Group and the UK Response to ARA San Juan" by Lt Cdr Gareth Griffiths RN and WO1 Thorpe.

I think most of us are familiar with the submarine escape training tower at what used to be HMS Dolphin, and, indeed I expect most of us have had the pleasure of ascending from the module at the bottom at 100ft; with the obligatory punch in the stomach from the staff to ensure we were expelling air as we ascended. "Griff" Griffiths will bring us up-to-date with their operations including the latest techniques for rapid deployment from aircraft to render assistance to a stricken submarine anywhere in the world. SPAG were placed on stand-by in the Falklands when the ARA San Juan disappeared off Patagonia in November 2017. WO1 Thorpe flew out to be prepared to give assistance if required. It will be interesting to have his perspective on the incident.


Monday!5th April 2019

"Volvo Ocean Race and America’s Cup, an insight!" by Abby Ehler


 Abby is a Lymington-based sailor who has recently competed in her third Volvo Ocean Race. She was the boat captain and bowman on Amer Sports Too in 2001-02 under her maiden name of Seager. She then sailed aboard Team SCA in the 2014-15 Volvo Ocean Race and most recently Abby was the boat captain in the 2017-18 Volvo Ocean Race aboard Team Brunel, skippered by Bouwe Bekking.

Abby has a working career in the yachting industry, both on and off the water. She has worked for the America’s Cup Event Authority during the 34th and 35th America’s Cup and is currently working for the newly launched Sail GP, a global sports series sailed in the F50 wing sailed catamarans.



  Recent Lectures have included:

The Wager Disaster; Mayhem, Mutiny and Murder in the South Seas" by Rear Admiral Kit Layman CB, DSO, LVO

 “The British Carrier Strike Fleet after 1945” by Cdr David Hobbs RN

“S/m experiences” by Vice Admiral Peter Wilkinson CB CVO (title to be


 “The mysterious loss of sailing yacht OUZO off the Isle of Wight” by Mike Waddleton.

From Sea To Sky; The Royal Navy’s Aircraft Carriers 1912 to 1945” by Andrew Choong Han Lin, Curator, Historic Photos and Ships Plans, National Maritime Museum.

   Preparing Portsmouth for HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH” by Captain Iain Greenlees RN

 “Reflections on a second career with the UN” by Cdr Geoff Wordley RN

  “White Ship, Red Crosses – a BritishHospital Ship at War” by Senior Nursing Officer Nicci Pugh

 “Operation Neptune: Frogmen – the first men ashore on D-Day” by Lt Cdr Rob Hoole RN (retired)

“Instructor Officer at War” by Lt Cdr Nigel Huxtable RN (retired)

 “Bird in a Biplane” by Lt Cdr Tracey Curtis-TaylorRNR

“Op Herrick 5, Afghanistan” Lt Col Matt Holmes RM (CO 42 Cdo RM)
"Op Herrick 9, Afghanistan" Cdr Kev Seymour RN (CO Navy Strike Wing )

"Future threats and risks", Rear Admiral Chris Parry

"United States ICEX Operations 2011, RN involvement and experiences"

“UK Maritime Trade Operations, anti-piracy and maritime security operations in the Middle East”

“Fleet Diving Squadron, worldwide diving and EOD"

“Operation Bugle, the EU response to the ‘Darfurisation’ of Chad”

“HMS Daring,1st Type 45 destroyer”Capt Paul Bennett RN (CO HMS Daring)

“Buccaneer, last all British bomber”

“Falklands, HMS Coventry” Cdre Jamie Miller (OOW when she was struck by an Argentine Exocet missile)

“Falklands,the Air War” Cdre Neill Thomas (CO 899 Naval Air Squadron)

“Falklands, 3 Cdo Bgde” Major General Julian Thompson (CO 3 Cdo Bgde)

“The Channel Dash, 825 NAS suicide attack on the German battle cruisers

in the 2nd WW” Lt Cdr Edgar Lee RN (last survivor of the action)

“Operation Frankton, the Cockleshell Heroes Raid"

“Falklands experiences” by Rear Admiral Chris Parry

“SCRAM! Junglies in the Falklands” by Lt Harry Benson RN (retd)

"In the wake of William Bligh" the recreation of Lt Bligh's small boat voyage

"Row to the Pole" Mark Delstanche
“F35 Lightning ll – The Future of British Fixed Wing Maritime Aviation”

 “The Falklands war – a close run thing” by Commander Jeff Tall RN (retired)

 “The Shackleton Epic expedition” the recreation of Shackleton's boat journey

“The Flying Boats of Southampton” by Colin van Geffin
“The Battle of the Atlantic” by Rear Admiral John Lang
 “Submarine operations in the Cold War” by Cdr Jeff Tall RN (retired

 “The Coder Special Archive” by Tony Cash

“Operation Ellamy; submarine operations during the Libyan crisis” by

Commander  Robert Dunn RN  

“The EU Training Mission to Somalia” by Commander Mark Barton RN

 “The story of the Schneider Air Races” by Colin van Geffin

 “Carrier Strike – Regenerating the UK’s Carrier Aviation Capability” by Cdr Nick Walker RN

“The Three Voyages of Exploration of Captain James Cook”

 “Unsung heroes: the Royal Naval Division in World War 1” by Captain

 Christopher Page RN Retired

“Cheerfulness in the face of adversity – 350 years of smiling through gritted

 teeth” by Chris Terrill

Four men in a boat” by Ken Endean

“Trinity House 500 and its role today” by Commander Graham Hockley Royal Navy

 “The Royal Navy Historic Flight” by Lieutenant Commander Christopher Gotke AFC RN   

 “Martin Nasmith VC – Pioneer Submariner” by Duncan Dunbar-Nasmith

“No more history lessons – Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2015” by Lt Ben Timpson RN

 “Gallipoli: Myth and Memory” will be presented by Nick Hewitt
 “HMS M33 – Unique Gallipoli Survivor” will be presented by Matthew Sheldon

 “An update on the Type 26 programme” by Captain Tim Cryar RN

“Imagining the Future of Submarines” by Hon. Captain Jeremy Greaves RNR and Mr Alex Morphew