Plymouth Nautical College .. Portland Place

derekhore
17th August 2011, 13:40
Anyone else down at Plymouth from 1970 onwards, BP or otherwise?

Days of Bill Currie as head warden; Chiefy Tozer for signals, flag break on the teaching block roof and drill on Saturday mornings; Mr Lester for GSK; Seamanship with Mr Mitchell & Captain Hyde at the Seamanship Centre down at Cattedown; Fire Courses at Ernesettle fire station ... the list goes on!

Many other Deck Cadets there from Shell, Reardon Smith, Blue Star, RFA, New Zealand Shipping .. plus a lot of Engineer cadets too.

Sparkies also did their Radio Courses at Plymouth Poly.


After the Induction Course at the main residential building (paid for by Shell), Phase 2 was spent either there again or in Merrifield Hall or Standard House.

Happy days, even though we had to wear uniform during the day, including all visits into the City Centre!

pete
20th August 2011, 10:19
Did my all my tickets in Plymouth College (as it was then) finishing in 1974. I remember Chiefy Tozer well but I can also remember Capt Day (Planetarium) and Capt Fifield who was my saviour with his Formulae for splitting "B". I've forgotten it now (ravages of time) but it was bl**dy handy) cheers........pete

Tom Condren
20th August 2011, 11:22
'Splitting B'? Now you've ruined my Saturday!!

derekhore
18th September 2011, 17:36
Don't recall a Capt Fifield ... but Capt Day and the Planetarium, along with the Plymouth city skyline I remember well!

A quick pint at the James Street Vaults (still there) just behind the residential block .. or a trip down to the Goodies (Good Companions) in Drakes Circus, which has now gone.
Also the Unity by the multi-storey car park .. and a trip down Union Street on a Friday night to see the MP's deal with drunken matelots at closing time!

RCFC
27th September 2011, 16:08
Phase I in 1971, Phase III in1974 in Standard House with Warden Pop Howard.... happy days

derekhore
27th September 2011, 16:15
Good old Pop Howard, would lock the doors dead on time but always leave a downstairs window open!

Standard House was handy for the station .. and for the Penny-Come-Quick pub .. which I notice now is all boarded up.

Many preferred Merrifield Hall over in Greenbank Road - only because it was next to the nurses home!!

duquesa
27th September 2011, 20:45
Did all my ticket studying there in the 60's. Fantastic memories. Moreby was the senior lecturer (Not the principal). Fifield was also a senior staff member. Day and Danton (of TV weather fame) also. The other names will filter back as I think about it. I think I spent more time in the Navigation Bar at the Bedford Arms drinking brown ale than I did in the tech. Another chap taught stability and had written a text book on it which we used.

derekhore
27th September 2011, 21:30
Graham Danton was a regular on our local Westward televison doing the nightly weather forecast.

I still have a near pristine copy of his "Dantons Seamanship"!!

Cornish Wrecker
27th September 2011, 21:39
Joined 1960 after interview with Capt Johnson who sadly passed away.Capt Hughs took over as principal. Remember well Capt Fifield who looked after the Shell Cadets.Capt Day took us for Gyro Compass work,Capt Danton wrote his own seamanship book of which we all had a copy he went on to appear on the then Westward Television and later Radio Devon.Capt Gibson took us for boatwork on a ketch at Mutton Cove-he with his guitar sang the background music for an old film "Fire Down Below". Chiefy Tozer was there as well as Capt Hyde. Bumped into Capt Moreby on Paddington Station going to join the Egyptian Prince in West India Docks. I believe next year would be 150years of the School of Navigation so might be some celebration?. There is a training ketch called "Tectona" back in Plymouth I beleive it was used by Shell Cadets all those years ago. We used to have to go to the Naval Barracks at HMS Drake for drill with Navy Gunnery Instructers on the parade ground they used to take delight at putting their nose next to yours to yell at you-good old days.

derekhore
29th September 2011, 16:25
The Tectona was still going in the 70's .. used for survival courses etc.

Fisherman's Nose down on the Hoe, just a long from the Barbican was where we did all our radar courses.
Boatwork was done at Cattedown

Ian Brown
2nd October 2011, 19:06
Did all my ticket studying there in the 60's. Fantastic memories. Moreby was the senior lecturer (Not the principal). Fifield was also a senior staff member. Day and Danton (of TV weather fame) also. The other names will filter back as I think about it. I think I spent more time in the Navigation Bar at the Bedford Arms drinking brown ale than I did in the tech. Another chap taught stability and had written a text book on it which we used.

Think the Stability text book must have been Capt. Derret.

I was a victim of Chiefy Tozer being the only Denholms cadet that year but after his 'teaching by terror' I never had any trouble passing the exams.
We hung out at the 'Chichester' on the Barbican. Long gone now.

duquesa
2nd October 2011, 21:46
Derret was indeed the chap. Many thanks.

derekhore
3rd October 2011, 11:08
We hung out at the 'Chichester' on the Barbican. Long gone now.

Sadly most of the pubs used by MN Cadets have now long gone .. as I say, only the "Jamie" still trades just behind the old residential block.


Deck Cadets used to be in a bit of a minority .. as Engineers Cadets used to be there long term .... being given terms as CC's & CCC's (Cadet Captains & Chief Cadet Captains) and responsible for the claenliness of all the rooms, showers etc - carrying out daily inspections before breakfast!

Shell mainly funded the college, but there were Cadets there from all Companies ...BP, Esso, RFA, Denholms, Irish Shipping, Bibby Line, P & O, Reardon Smith, New Zealand Shipping, Houlder Bros .. to name just a few!

Uniform worn all day, especially if visiting the city centre; flag break on the teaching block roof every morning at 08.45, overseen by Chiefy Tozer who also carried out a 'length of hair' inspection at the same time, drill in the carpark on Saturday mornings .... etc.

Peggy duties in the canteen at breakfast & lunchtimes - a real pain that was!!

Head Warden at the time was Bill Curry .. who lived in the "Penthouse" at the top of the block.

duquesa
3rd October 2011, 18:50
When I was there it was "The Tech". We wore what the heck we liked and there wasn't an engineer in sight. (==D)

derekhore
3rd October 2011, 18:57
I was there on & off from 1970 onwards ... so it took a turn for the worse after your time!

derekhore
9th October 2011, 13:44
There is a training ketch called "Tectona" back in Plymouth I beleive it was used by Shell Cadets all those years ago.


More on the Tectona here:

http://www.tectona.org.uk/index.html

Steve G
20th December 2011, 16:01
I was there from September 1972 for 2 years, remember it well. Cheques to LR Mills in the 'Jamie' (max value 3 but it paid for a whole weekend on the p including a night out in Tiffanies) Chiefey Towzer etc, etc

derekhore
21st December 2011, 09:44
Happy days - the 'Jamie' is still there I think, though we used the 'Goodies' more, now long gone.
I was there partly during 1972 .. first 3 months I think

saltyswamp
27th December 2011, 22:46
Sadly most of the pubs used by MN Cadets have now long gone .. as I say, only the "Jamie" still trades just behind the old residential block.


Deck Cadets used to be in a bit of a minority .. as Engineers Cadets used to be there long term .... being given terms as CC's & CCC's (Cadet Captains & Chief Cadet Captains) and responsible for the claenliness of all the rooms, showers etc - carrying out daily inspections before breakfast!

Shell mainly funded the college, but there were Cadets there from all Companies ...BP, Esso, RFA, Denholms, Irish Shipping, Bibby Line, P & O, Reardon Smith, New Zealand Shipping, Houlder Bros .. to name just a few!

Uniform worn all day, especially if visiting the city centre; flag break on the teaching block roof every morning at 08.45, overseen by Chiefy Tozer who also carried out a 'length of hair' inspection at the same time, drill in the carpark on Saturday mornings .... etc.

Peggy duties in the canteen at breakfast & lunchtimes - a real pain that was!!

Head Warden at the time was Bill Curry .. who lived in the "Penthouse" at the top of the block.

Hi I was There
At tech for two years sept 71 to June73 remember them all. 18th birthday in the jamie after revision ratarsed in an hour.
Mainly we were posh and went to the wellington.
Was with Houlders on 2 Eng Course They called me Kettle.

derekhore
28th December 2011, 08:30
The Wellie .. an upmarket pub - almost as good as the Unity at the top of Union Street!!

saltyswamp
28th December 2011, 22:38
Do you remember the early evening classes before dinner. One of the best the ballroom dancing with the girls from the local school.
Names I Can remember are John Ash (Shell), Tony Bray(Shell),Hamish(Shaw Savill), David? Massey(Houlders) & Robin from Soding Chipbury. All eng cadets Will have to dig out my old adress book.
Still think the wellie was hard to beat

derekhore
29th December 2011, 09:23
Don't recall those classes!! .. perhaps they were 'exclusive' for the Eng Cadets.

One Eng Cadet who I remember, he was the CEC on our floor I think, was Jimmy Landry - not liked by anyone, least of all those from the deck side!

saltyswamp
29th December 2011, 11:34
Don't recall those classes!! .. perhaps they were 'exclusive' for the Eng Cadets.

One Eng Cadet who I remember, he was the CEC on our floor I think, was Jimmy Landry - not liked by anyone, least of all those from the deck side!

rather loud and full of himself,
I think the classes were an option which unless you knew were a no no

derekhore
31st December 2011, 17:18
rather loud and full of himself,


That is an understatement!!

I think one or two of us took the wind out of his sails as we were promoted to 3/O's during our Phase 2 sea time .. and went back to Plymouth for our final phase wearing one band of braid on our uniform cuffs rather than just a Cadets markings.

He used to leave us alone then!!

saltyswamp
1st January 2012, 22:10
trying to find address book for names
stuart

Steve G
16th January 2012, 14:26
Hi I was There
At tech for two years sept 71 to June73 remember them all. 18th birthday in the jamie after revision ratarsed in an hour.
Mainly we were posh and went to the wellington.
Was with Houlders on 2 Eng Course They called me Kettle.

I was there (engineer) 72-74 so we must have overlapped by a year. I spent my first year in a dorm of 6 with a 2nd year NZS cadet in charge, name if Ian Gadene (also known as 'flower') You may remember him.

saltyswamp
21st January 2012, 22:34
I was there (engineer) 72-74 so we must have overlapped by a year. I spent my first year in a dorm of 6 with a 2nd year NZS cadet in charge, name if Ian Gadene (also known as 'flower') You may remember him.

Hi
Can remember him just, I can picture him in my head always had a floppy cap?
stuart

TARBATNESS
23rd January 2012, 13:14
Did all my tickets in Plymouth. Ended up living in Ivybridge and then Ugborough as it was cheaper to have a mortgage as opposed to paying for digs during my Mates ticket. Chiefy Tozer was a hoot and I can still read light and do semaphore 38 years later! Other names:- Cornish, Rich, Danton, Day, Carter.... Mainly RFA, Irish Shipping, Shell, Mobile, P&O (all 3 divisions) in my time and lodged in Merrifield Hall. Most of the Cadets had gone by the time I did Masters in the mid-80's and will never forget "splitting B".

derekhore
24th January 2012, 20:52
Graham Danton took us on Phase 1 for Seamanship ... pushing his own book of course!!

I was at Standard House for Phase 3 .. handy for the station!

Stuart
25th January 2012, 22:09
Hi

I did my RO's ticket in Plymouth 70 to 73. My local was the Fortesque up on Mutley Plain as I was in digs localy. I had been drinking there for about 18 months,(two pints of reb barel and a castella cigar), when the landlord came into the bar (Mr Tregenna?) and said. "I hear it's your birthday, have a pint on me. How Old are you?" He did not speak to me again after I said I was 18 today. Ah the ignorance of youth!

Rgds

Stuart

wharferat
27th January 2012, 21:29
As an Eng Cadet 1977 -79, the Jamie was a regular watering hole in the first year, but in the second, a few of us started using the Fortescue. The Goodies was a stop on the way to the Barbican or Union Street.
For all those that drank in the Goodies, once they'd proved how old they were, that past cannot be repeated, & the future is uncertain.
http://www.thisisplymouth.co.uk/Boarded-Plymouth-city-centre-pub-make-way-200/story-15050887-detail/story.html

derekhore
27th January 2012, 22:24
Indeed it is a sad end for the Goodies, I only used it on a Sunday night.
The regular used by myself and other Deck Cadets was the Penny-Come-Quick, or the PCQ, which was the other side of the mainline station on the roundabout. Sadly that too is now boarded up and awaiting demolition for flats I believe.

http://img2.photographersdirect.com/img/24016/wm/pd2374745.jpg

Hard to remember Union Street as it used to be .. with a railway arch over the top end, taking the line down to Millbay Docks ... now the track etc is the site of the Plymouth Pavilions & Toys-R-Us and Union Street is a shadow of its former glory, all opened up now. Many a night we went down there to see the MP's dragging drunken Matelots into the back of their Lad Rovers and taking them back to Devonport!!

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/111/288407193_bf392c2d22.jpg

Samuel Feneck, the naval outfitters was down there and I think still is!

wharferat
28th January 2012, 09:00
The bridge had gone by 1977, so I never had the pleasure of walking underneath it from civilisation to no-mans land.
Joe Fenecks is still there, but since the death of Joe many years ago, now trades as "Fenecks", run by his daughter, I think..

derekhore
28th January 2012, 09:07
Cannot remember exactly what was under the bridge, though pretty sure there was a cafe, a taxi firm and definitely there was a second hand clothing shop ... as I bought (& still have) a Plymouth City Transport great coat - put BP buttons on it and wore it to sea around the Scandinavian coast in winter!! A great asset to my uniform.
This would have been around 1973-74 when I was there are my first sea period away.

Mikepg
29th January 2012, 00:30
I was there 1970 -72 doing Phase One. A couple of lecturers names that I remember are Mr Mathews (Jack?), Mr Weddell, and Mr Watson, who took us for Mar.Eng.Practice and explained the principles of the steam catapult more than once - he was ex RN and quite easily 'blown off course'. Chiefy Tozer would have us trying to march in the car park on Saturday mornings, and Sundays would sometimes see us dropped off on Dartmoor as practice for the rescue team. Morning breaks often involved a trip to the 'Marquee' bar (on the other side of Tavistock Road) for coffee. There were weekly outings (or were they 'turn about' with the boat centre?) on the coach over the Torpoint Ferry to HMS Raleigh for workshop practice, where we could amble across the parade ground whilst the 'Tiffys' had to double. Evenings sometimes had to be occupied sat at a desk outside the lifts in the main residential block, doing (fire?) duty or some such thing, and occasionally time was spent doing boat duty at the Boat Centre, from where we would row Whalers or Cutters, or sail RNSAs, about once a fortnight. And who could forget the scramble for the (pay) telephones in the evenings, just off of the Foyer. Somewhere here I've some photographs that I pictured from one of the 'cabins' which I'll try to post if I can find them.

derekhore
29th January 2012, 18:59
Were you there when there used to be the odd scrap with local gangs from round the area .. a call would go out over the tannoy from the Duty Cadet in the front office .."Motor cycle club to assemble in the foyer"

Mikepg
29th January 2012, 19:54
Now that you mention it I do recall something happening along those lines, but I wasn't involved personally--'onest guv! I do remember 'Soapy', quite a well built fellow, short hair, who used to ride a modified Lambretta or some such, but I don't think that he was the sort to get involved in scraps. I've a feeling that he was one of Cayzer's Eng Cdts, like myself. I do remember that the Matelots used to bomb us with beer bottles as we exitted the subways under one of the City centre roundabouts in the evenings. Happy days, regards, Mike

derekhore
30th January 2012, 11:42
Turning the tags in reception from 'Out' to 'In' if your mate was going to be late back - then leaving the window on the hook in the 'bridge' leading to the refectory, by the down pipe!
Head Warden Bill Curry always seemed to know though, sure he had cctv directed on those windows!

Mikepg
20th February 2012, 23:58
I was one of a group who were invited to join an RN ship for a day at Plymouth. We boarded this vessel, an oldish destroyer I think and I believe the last of her type, down at Devonport one morning and sailed out into the Channel, where we spent the next few hours policing an exclusion zone around what I believe was a small coaster. Apparently she'd arrived in port with a cargo of (or including) explosives, which were weaping and had been deemed unstable. Anyway, at dusk there was quite a vivid flash on the horizon as that little ship was blown asunder, followed a few seconds later by the shock wave. A few bits of timber marked the spot where she'd been, and then it was full speed back to port. Boy, did she motor! I seem to remember standing on the stern looking up at the standing wave from her props, illuminated by the deck lights. She was steam turbine powered, and had a pressurised boiler-room to provide combustion air, accessed by air locks, but her name escapes me, and I don't think that I was ever aware of the name of the coaster.
As an aside, does the name 'Bridget' ring any bells?
Regards, Mike

derekhore
21st February 2012, 10:40
What year was this Mike??

Sounds a bit 'iffy' !!

Charlie_Wood
21st February 2012, 11:04
I was there 1970 -72 doing Phase One. A couple of lecturers names that I remember are Mr Mathews (Jack?), Mr Weddell, and Mr Watson, who took us for Mar.Eng.Practice and explained the principles of the steam catapult more than once - he was ex RN and quite easily 'blown off course'. Chiefy Tozer would have us trying to march in the car park on Saturday mornings, and Sundays would sometimes see us dropped off on Dartmoor as practice for the rescue team. Morning breaks often involved a trip to the 'Marquee' bar (on the other side of Tavistock Road) for coffee. There were weekly outings (or were they 'turn about' with the boat centre?) on the coach over the Torpoint Ferry to HMS Raleigh for workshop practice, where we could amble across the parade ground whilst the 'Tiffys' had to double. Evenings sometimes had to be occupied sat at a desk outside the lifts in the main residential block, doing (fire?) duty or some such thing, and occasionally time was spent doing boat duty at the Boat Centre, from where we would row Whalers or Cutters, or sail RNSAs, about once a fortnight. And who could forget the scramble for the (pay) telephones in the evenings, just off of the Foyer. Somewhere here I've some photographs that I pictured from one of the 'cabins' which I'll try to post if I can find them.

Ha, a legacy from the first term it opened. I moved from "old" Portland Square (only demolished a couple of years ago) to the top floor of the new block. One Sunday night the fire alarms went off and we all trooped down the stairs, moaning at Bill Currie's fire drill timing, to be met by smoke billowing up the stairs which hastened our exit. It transpired that one Roger Crockford, a Shell deck cadet from JO23 had piled up the matresses from one of the lower, as yet unoccupied floors, and set fire to them. He was whisked away and not seen again, I believe his father was high up in Dunlop or Goodyear and it was hushed up.

Several of us from J23 in 1970 still meet fairly regularly for a few drinks in town.

Mikepg
21st February 2012, 18:14
I was there from September '70 until '72, so it must have been during that period. I might be able to pinpoint the date through my collection of WSS Marine News', it may have been mentioned there.
Is Bill Currie still about?
Regards, Mike

derekhore
21st February 2012, 18:22
Heaven only knows what happened to Bill Currie!

I was down there from mid-71 to early-72 .. then again from late-73 to mid-74, living in the Portland Square block ... then again in later years staying at Standard House and also in digs in North Road East, plus a month I think in Merriefield Hall!

Powers
21st February 2012, 23:08
Strong possibility that the old destroyer would have been HMS CAPRICE.

Regards.....Paul

derekhore
22nd February 2012, 15:08
Don't think it could have been Caprice:

"Finally in 1973, the Caprice, then Navy’s last remaining, serving World War II destroyer was finally taken out of commission and later broken up in November 1979 at Washer Wharf, Queenborough."

Powers
22nd February 2012, 21:21
Re above post 45.

I'm sorry I don't follow your logic. Mikepg stated that he was in Plymouth from 1970 to 1972 when he went to sea for a day in an old destroyer. HMS CAPRICE was running in and out of Devonport during that period as the Marine Engineering Officers Training ship, which is why I suggested it could have been her. Have I missed something?

Regards.....Paul

Mikepg
22nd February 2012, 22:03
I do believe that Paul is correct. I've had a look at some of the on-line pictures and they certainly show a similar vessel. The pennant number DO1, the latice main mast and a connection with Manadon all ring bells. From what I've read this evening, she completed a refit at Gibratar in early 1971, after which she worked up at Portland before becoming the Marine Engineering Officers Training Ship, so our trip must have been late 1971 or early 1972. I seem to recall that we sailed on one of those bright but cold winters mornings, and that it was dark when we were running back to Devonport, suggesting late 1971 / early 1972. I'll get back to my Marine News' and see if I can find anything now that the time span is more restricted - they're not the most rivetting reading and my eyelids seem to get heavy after a spell.
Regards, Mike

Mikepg
22nd February 2012, 22:55
Me again. Marine News, April 1972, page 152 - " Saint Bridget (Oak-64), 709/53-m.v., owned by Strathpark Shipping Co. Ltd., (J. & A. Gardner & Co. Ltd., managers),was blown up and sunk 40 miles south of the Lizard 14/2/72. She had been carrying a cargo of nitroglycerine and while this was being transhipped to Autolycus, 7,420/49 - m.v. in Carrick Roads, Falmouth, 6/2/72 it was discovered that some of the cases were leaking. Hence it was decided that the only course was to blow her up in safety." Perhaps my memory isn't that bad after all. (Coincidentaly my birthday is 6/2/54, and my wife and I
married on 14/2/76 ).
Many thanks for your interest and help,
Regards, Mike
p.s. The reference to 'Bridget' in my earlier post was nothing to do with this vessel - it was the rather irreverent nick-name we used for Bill Curries' wife, and another coincidence I guess.

derekhore
23rd February 2012, 07:15
Re above post 45.

I'm sorry I don't follow your logic. Mikepg stated that he was in Plymouth from 1970 to 1972 when he went to sea for a day in an old destroyer. HMS CAPRICE was running in and out of Devonport during that period as the Marine Engineering Officers Training ship, which is why I suggested it could have been her. Have I missed something?

Regards.....Paul

Sorry, my mistake ... I thought he said the destroyer was scuttled, not the coaster!

Apologies for the confusion!

Powers
24th February 2012, 20:41
Derek - I now understand - cheers.

Mikepg - thanks for an interesting story.

Regards......Paul

Steve G
27th February 2012, 14:41
Hi
Can remember him just, I can picture him in my head always had a floppy cap?
stuart

The hat was turned down at the sides rather than being floppy. I think he had secret ambitions to be a U boat commander. I have a picture of the class of 72 on my 'gallery'

saltyswamp
27th February 2012, 22:20
I think several wanted to be u-boat commanders

shipahoy
7th March 2012, 14:31
I was at Plymouth 1977-1980 as a Deck Cadet. We had the 'cabin' right at the end overlooking the city and the Sound. On Phase 1 I shared with two blokes from Reardon Smith. Room next door full of Engineers who bought one record at a time and played it incessantly to an inch of its life, then they bought another and so it went on... Cant listen to Mr Blue Sky without thinking of it

derekhore
7th March 2012, 17:33
Good times!
On Phase 1 there were 7 of us in a room (cabin) .. us BP Cadets had to have to top bunks and we had 3 Engineer Cadets from New Zealand Shipping in with us on the bottom bunks; and a Shell Engineer Cadet as our room 'Captain'

Ironique!

bengey
7th March 2012, 17:59
I was at Portland Place pre-sea sept 72, phase 1 ONC Sept 73 to Feb 74 and Merrifield phase 3 April to Dec 75
Was with RFA, Bliss, Jones, Carter, Evans , Thomas (RIP) and others from BP, P&O, Irish Shipping and Shell. Summer 75 best time of my life. Goodies every evening, beach or park then Wellington every sat & sun.
Lecturers Gibson, Crookall, Hill, Tozer.
Played football in winter close to Argyles ground, had 500 watching us in first half and nobody in second half
Sat the rest at Warsash,

derekhore
8th March 2012, 09:36
Always remember the RFA cadets were top notch with their semaphore & morse code as they used them all the time at sea! I think there were 3 guys with RFA when I was there, half a dozen from BP and the rest a general mix, mainly cargo guys.

The only lecturers name there that rings a bell is Tozer (Chiefy)! Had a guy called Lester for GSK ... Mitchell for Navigation & Seamanship - theory & practical down at Cattedown Boat Centre.
Must have been there at much of the same time .. did my EDH & Lifeboat in January 74 .. Radar Observer down at Fishers Nose in Nov 73, Fire fighting at Camels Head fire station in Nov 73

stonkingjohn
8th March 2012, 22:35
I was one of a group who were invited to join an RN ship for a day at Plymouth. We boarded this vessel, an oldish destroyer I think and I believe the last of her type, down at Devonport one morning and sailed out into the Channel, where we spent the next few hours policing an exclusion zone around what I believe was a small coaster. Apparently she'd arrived in port with a cargo of (or including) explosives, which were weaping and had been deemed unstable. Anyway, at dusk there was quite a vivid flash on the horizon as that little ship was blown asunder, followed a few seconds later by the shock wave. A few bits of timber marked the spot where she'd been, and then it was full speed back to port. Boy, did she motor! I seem to remember standing on the stern looking up at the standing wave from her props, illuminated by the deck lights. She was steam turbine powered, and had a pressurised boiler-room to provide combustion air, accessed by air locks, but her name escapes me, and I don't think that I was ever aware of the name of the coaster.
As an aside, does the name 'Bridget' ring any bells?
Regards, Mike

HMS Caprice was still active in the spring of '73. She did a patrol in the Cod War, I think she was there towards the end of Feb. I was on RFA Wave Chief and RASed with her on more than one occasion. She had a terrific turn of speed as well. After searching for a week for a life raft from an Icelandic trawler that had gone down, news came through that it had been sighted. Caprice must have lit up more fires as black smoke poured out of her funnels and she accelerated away from us. She looked very impressive, just like in the old war movies.

John

ninabaker
7th May 2012, 18:25
Hi all,
I was a deck cadet with BP at Plymouth for induction, ph 1 and Ph3 of OND, starting summer 1972.
Not, I am afraid, happy memories for me mostly. I was the only woman in the residences and somewhat socially isolated as my own classmates gave me an unrelentingly hard time. I generally socialised with the ONC classes who were better.

I dont recall many names, but someone else on page 1 of this thread mentioned John Ash, a Shell e/c very blond, and I recall him as I went out with him briefly, as also Steve Nolan, also Shell e/c very yorkshire. On the deck side I recall Tony Bateman, one of a load of the welsh cadets, a big guy, very affable. He was CCC in our second term of Ph1 and I was an SEC. Also another nice guy, the only one in my class, was Tim Leighton, a d/c from Bibby's. Tony became a policeman I think.

I really struggled with signals, especially the semaphore - we were the last lot to do it. I had to go to all the evening and saturday classes that Chiefy Tozer put on, just to scrape a pass on signals. Everything else was ok and I seem to recall a rotund Czech lecturer whose idea of teaching navigation was to dictate from the book.

Tectona: OMG! The trip we did was AWFUL - most of us seasick. We managed to totally lose 3 massive dayglo orange buoys in an effort to learn man overboard drill before the instructor felt this was becoming too expensive to continue. I always avoided sailing when it was in dinghies as I never much liked it but loved the rowing in whalers and lifeboats as I had done loads before I joined.

As both Ph1 and Ph3 were during the winters I also recall ghastly games afternoons in the driving rain, doing crosscountry running while the boys did rugby or something.

Nitelife: Goodies - tick - I can scarcely recall going anywhere else. What was the name of that massive barn of a place with no furniture, kitted out like a wildwest saloon, at the far end of Union street? It was wildwest by nature too, very nasty. Also for upscale nasty: The Groin Exchange down on the Hoe?

nina

derekhore
7th May 2012, 18:40
The Groin Exchange - - wasn't that Plymouth Sailing Club?
3rd mate Dave Thomas from Hooe, just outside Plymouth, was doing his mates whilst I was doing my Phase 3 - he had a yellow Cortina mark 3 and used to collect me from College and take me there!!
Stayed at Standard House for phase 3 - many stayed at Merriefield Hall because it was next door to the nurses home in Greenbank Road - but I used to get off home every weekend and Standard House was right next to Plymouth railway station ... & Mr 'pop' Howard who was the warden there used to let me off each week.
Shared a room with Geoff Meadway (BP), he had a 3 wheeled Messerschmidt car and was from Kent I think!

ninabaker
7th May 2012, 18:59
Mr Cornish popped back into my life here in Glasgow as he was head of the Glasgow Nautical College and used to come to meetings at the department of naval architecture where I used to work at the university. He has now retired I think.

PaulFuller
7th May 2012, 20:42
Came across the site by chance. Have just read through the thread - brings back many (mainly good) memories of life as a Shell cadet in the RNC (induction course 1972), Phase 1 1973 with Bill Currie and Phase 3 in 1975 in Standard House with Pop Howard).

Nina, I certainly remember your name and sorry that your memories are not all good.

I certainly remember the dancing classes on Phase 3 or was it Phase 1 with the girls from Sherwood School - great fun.

Spent most of free time in Goodies until Ron (landlord) moved to Three Crowns. Scottie Dunn, Alan Jones, Peter Sim, Dave Isaacs et al.

Mid-week we used to go to Halfway House and Sundays was either Plume of Feathers or over to the Ship at Noss Mayo.

Tectona was a nightmare went to France and I was sick as a dog until made cook which seemed to cure it probably because it was non stop and you didn't have to time to be sea sick.

Remember being late for signals with Chiefy Tozer having I think just taken driving test - he went ballistic and I spent Saturday morning cutting grass outside RNC with a pair of scissors.

Recently went back to Plymouth on business, met up with Tim Charlesworth (HM Cattewater) and we went to Jamie for a couple - wouldn't have recognised it. Who remembers cashing a cheque for a couple of quid in exchange for a pint? Had a few pints in there by candlelight during the miners strike.

derekhore
7th May 2012, 22:35
Plume of Feathers was a regular on Wednesday eve and Sunday lunchtimes .... Pheasant Pluckers played out there on Wednesdays and Porrij on Sundays.

Used to use the Penny Come Quick pub down past the railway station on the other side, passing through the Jamie to cash a cheque on the way. Goodies was a Sunday night visit, usually with Steve Lyons (deceased), who was another BP cadet from Paignton, often gave me a lift back in his MG Midget.

Never got to cut the grass with scissors, though regular marching drill on a Saturday morning followed by litter picking as a punishment was a Chiefy special.
Bloody flag break every morning on the teaching block roof - followed by a hair length check!!

Radar courses down at Fishers Nose, now a cafe for visitors I believe.

There was a big mixture of cadets at Plymouth when I was there, plenty of Shell lads - BP also used to send their Sparkies to Plymouth Uni next door for various courses.

Martyn Hammond
25th May 2012, 21:10
Was there for MCRC 69 at Murryfield and Stanford Houses (I think those are the spellings)
One of the things that stands out in my mind is making supper and slicing the bread as thin as possible with the meat slicer and keeping the bulk of the loaf for ourselves.
Getting jumped on by the other cadets as the bread was brought out on a tray
Hilarious

Andy Biegala
1st July 2012, 23:46
Hi All

I am Andrew Biegala and I had the good fortune to be taken on as a deck cadet by Silver Line in 1977. I did a two week induction course in August 1977. Then came back to Portland Square from April to December 1978 and finally to Standard House from September 1979 to April 1980.

I remember these times with great affection. Not everything was fun at the time of course but looking back on it I would not change one thing, one class mate or one day.

I remember the legendary Cheify Tozier, my own class tutor Stafford-Pozier and in particular Captain Wormald, Ex shell Captain who told the best sea stories that will ever be told and inspired me to carry on at times when I felt it was getting too hard.

I did my stint on the Tectona. My class was split into two groups. The first half of the alphabet was made up largely of the rogues and characters of the class and we gave the standing crew of the Tectona a hard time. During our week we used up all the water, ate all the food and ran down the battery. Only the wind was left!

The second part of the class followed us (after doing the Dartmoor thing) and they were well behaved and disciplined. Unfortunatley, their bus arrived late and they were late reporting to Tectona and the crew decided they had an even worse group than us and decided to discipline them on the spot, hence a large part of their first day was spent cleaning the slip way of the seamanship centre!

I remember the generally good food in generous portions and the wonderful way we were looked after by the dinner ladies ("All right my lover").

The discipline could be a bit arbitary. I remember a particular incident with one of my class mates. The lifts could hold ten people. One day he got into the lift at the top and during its decent through the ten floors of Portland Square more and more cadets got aboard until there were eleven and he was at the back.

When it got to the ground floor the bearded scottish guy that ran the foyer at the time counted out the cadets and he was the eleventh guy out despite being the first one aboard and was blamed for the overloading and disciplined. Whenever I think of this incident I burst out in tears of laughter.

The standard of tuition was extrodinary. I was a dumb home counties kid (still am really!) and how they got me through the many exams and courses I will never really know but my theory is that as most of the tutors there were ex seafarers, frequently brought ashore for reasons of injury, retirement etc. They were seafarers first and teachers second, but the first profession gave them the command and the credibility plus the love of the subject (and us) to really impose learning upon us.

I will never get such a good education ever again or anywhere else and am fortunate to have passed through it's doors.

I hope these few words touch off a shed load of memories for my fellow students and shipmates.

derekhore
2nd July 2012, 11:44
Thanks for jogging the memory a bit Andy .... Stafford-Poizer I certainly remember.
Did you have Mr Lester for GSK?

Was Mr 'Pop' Howard at Standard House whilst you lodged there?
Great guy, always left a downstairs window open if anyone was late back.

The discipline side of things/wearing uniform during the day etc .. I think was basically to try and keep on par with the Royal navy colleges at Devonport, though why the MN needed to match the RN I never knew!

As you say - they were good lecturers there in those days.

Andy Biegala
2nd July 2012, 12:27
If I remember correctly the guy that managed Standard house when I was there was a lecturer by the name of John Hill though I stand to be corrected.

The discipline side of things was due to the fact that you qualified for sea time which counted towards your certificates of competency so the department of trade or whoever required a certain level of seaman like behaviour and the creation of a maritime environment.

Looking back I think it may well have been necessary anyway as we were all quite strong characters given our willingness to absent ourselves from our homes and have an adventure and a framework of rules was probably thought necessary in order to keep some sort of control.

Even then if you think about some of the things that went on it was barely able to keep the lid on.

Looking back it was the strong discipline that made me do the work and somehow got me through I pay tribute here to all the lecturers that worked there.

derekhore
2nd July 2012, 14:53
Don't recall a John Hill at all, although I did spend a couple of months at Merriefield Hall when I had to do a resit so he might have been at Standard House then.

Probably yes re the discipline - though I still think the college liked to compete with the RN .. especially in Chiefy Tozer's eyes!!!

shipahoy
10th August 2012, 13:11
There was Castaways in Union Street.
Also talking of rough houses there was a right dive in the city centre called Noahs Ark Opened the eyes a bit for a lad from rural Bukinghamshire I can tell you

derekhore
10th August 2012, 20:39
The Noah's Ark is still be there!

http://www.noahsarkplymouth.co.uk/

Colin Cooper
18th September 2012, 00:44
I did my induction at Plymouth in July 79, and Phase 1 in Sept 80- Mar 81.

I can't remember much at all about the induction, other than being told the names for the "sharp" and "blunt" ends of a boat. As far as Phase 1 is concerned, despite the fact that we were in some pub or other every night for 6 months, it seems as if it were only yesterday.

Other cadets were Mike King and Graham Russell, both Silver Line, Ross Jolliffe, Martin Dacombe and Andy (can't remember) Canadian Pacific, Les Tuckfield Cunard, Pete (Peesare) Green & Sue Shimwell both Shell and Richie Dunham RFA, but to name a few. There were 3 classes doing Phase 1 at the same time, so there was always a bit of mischief going on.

I can only remember a few of the lecturers names from the time. Navigation was a chap called Kapoor. He got us through the exams, but didn't inspire. I felt a bit sorry and embarrassed for him when he had asked a big Geordie Shell cadet, Tom, a question, who responded with "Can you repeat that in English". It was easier to understand Kapoor than it was Tom.
His "propelling" pencil ran out of lead during a chartwork lesson, and he asked to borrow a pencil. I offered him a 12H, which resulted in the remainder of the lesson becoming a lecture on "house-keeping" at sea. What a diversion!
I also got the giggles in one of his classes when I noticed a bit of graffiti on the desk I was sitting at. In black ink, it said "Kapoor is a ****", and immediately below it, a response had been scratched in to the desk which said "I'll drink to that!!" He just happened to be in a foul mood that day and had given a few of us a real pasting. What was on the desk wasn' really that funny, but it was just enough to start the "giggles" When he asked me to share the joke with the rest of the class, who, by now, have started to laugh at me. I of course denied there being any joke, and after a few coughs and deep breaths to steady myself, descended rapidly into uncontrollable hysterics. By this time, the rest of the class have caught up with me, and we're all pissing ourselves. The funny thing at that time, I was the only one who knew why. Given the mood he was in, I decided that I hadn't taken enough "brave pills" that day to tell him straight,
although I did tell the others later on.

I think GSK was a guy called Lester. I enjoyed his classes more than any other. No real memorable highlights or bollockings.

We had two blokes for Seamanship, Bill Favata and a "human Volcano" that went by the name of Lomax. Mike King seemed to be able to wind him up without trying. When we did the Lifeboat certificate, and were in the pool with the upside down inflatable raft, Lomax absolutely lost the plot with Mike, so much so, that we stayed in the middle of the pool fearing that he was going to board the liferaft to kill him. He had to be taken away by Favata to calm down.

We used to go to a local college for Physics on a Friday morning, and after lunch we had a free period which was supervised by an old lecturer. He also took classes in the Planetarium, and would shine that f*&$ing torch with the arrow pointer right into your eyes.

The pubs were ok, and most nights started at the Jolly Miller, and then on to Fiesta (disco) on Fridays and Saturday.I think that was the name of it. It was down towards Union Street. Saturday mornings would be to go down for breakfast, and then back to the room to collect the pre-purchased cans of beer, before heading up to the TV Lounge to watch Tiswas. After dinner on a Sunday a similar pattern was followed with the big attraction being the Professionals. The Plume of Feathers on a Sunday was always a good day out. A great atmosphere. During the week it would be dead.
During the week, after leaving the PoF and driving back over Dartmoor, we used to get Les Tuckfield to switch off his lights to see how far he could drive blind. One night after about 30 seconds, we switched the lights back on, only to find two Dartmoor ponies in the middle of the road about 20 feet away. He was obviously a highly skilled driver, as he went past them balancing the car on the port wheels only. We didn't play that game any more.

I really enjoyed my time in Plymouth. It was a great place to walk around, especially down in the older part of the town. It would be interesting to see what memories the place would trigger.

If you recognise any of the other cadet names above, please let me know. I'd like to say hello after 30 years.

Regards

Colin












There were also quite a few Iranian cadets there at the same time, which was just as the Ayatollah had returned to Iran. More often than not, they'd going off on one or

derekhore
18th September 2012, 08:15
Hi Colin ... I was at Plymouth a bit before you I guess, doing my induction there in 1970.

Had Mr Lester for GSK though, Mr Mitchell for Navigation and certainly Mr Favata rings a bell!

Was Bill Currie still Head Warden in the Residential Block - along with Chiefy Tozer for signals .. with semaphore on the roof!!

The PoF was a Wednesday regular as they had the folk band 'The Pheasant Pluckers' playing up there then.

oldman 80
20th September 2012, 23:10
Hi again Colin.
We met in another forum quite recently.
Plymouth must have been a great college - it produced the best deck cadet I ever came across - and there were many many excellent ones.
Seems they produced another, whom I didn't find out about for thirty years.
"Heavy Weapons" - I can sure understand what you meant, - and the frustration must have been awesome.
(1 case of beer - that was cheap, for sure. A bit of an insult in fact - but that's just typical of those days - big deal - Huh.)

Colin Cooper
21st September 2012, 01:29
Hi Colin ... I was at Plymouth a bit before you I guess, doing my induction there in 1970.

Had Mr Lester for GSK though, Mr Mitchell for Navigation and certainly Mr Favata rings a bell!

Was Bill Currie still Head Warden in the Residential Block - along with Chiefy Tozer for signals .. with semaphore on the roof!!

The PoF was a Wednesday regular as they had the folk band 'The Pheasant Pluckers' playing up there then.

Hello Derek,

I can't say that I can recall Bill Currie or Chiefy Tozer during my time, although a lot of people probably passed through in the 10 years between our respective stints at the college.

I am positive that it was Lester for GSK. When I arrived at Plymouth for Phase 1, I did receive a colossal bollocking for not sending in all of my correspondence course, with the major gaps being the various drawings of the ship, labelled etc. I was given a week to get it done otherwise I'd be reported to the company. I got them all done at night and duly handed them over. The drawings came back two days later with the comments "You would be more successful as a draughtsman than you will at sea. Well done". I got on well with him as he appeared to appreciate the fact that I could draw pretty well.

I'm sure it was Bill Favata, who was quite a laid back sort of guy. In fact he was a bit of a cool dude with his longer hair and corderouy jacket. He had a very strong accent,possibly from Dorset or somewhere else along the South coast, and when administering praise for something or other, it would always be " Ahhh. There's Lovely" which would come out as "Aaaahhhhttherrrrzzzluuuvvleeee". A bit of "pot and kettle" I suppose coming from a Glaswegian,

The only other person I remember that I could put a face to, and his name was mentioned earlier in this thread, was a John Hill. He featured a lot during our Induction Course, but I can't recall him being involved in any of our classes during Ph1.

I can still see the faces, but can't remember the names.

The Sunday afternoon atmosphere in the PoF was unique, and I am sad to say that I have never seen anywhere like it since. It was good natured bedlam. All publicans and landlords should be given a video of the POF going like the b***dy clappers on a Sunday, to show how things should be done.

All the best & regards

Colin

stephen hodges1
25th September 2012, 20:55
I was there from 1970 a rear on smith cadet with tom Lester,terry Davies and nigel Davies.We had a 2 week induction then off for 2 6 month sea trips when we came back to the school for phase 1.Good memories of the school and also Standard house (where I bunked with Derek HORE) remember me Derek old chum? and also later t Merrifield Hall.

ninabaker
25th September 2012, 23:25
Although I hated the place and would be perfectly content never to see Plymouth again i do recall a funny about the Goodies. As all here will know, lots of cadets on a night on the razzle never got any further than the Goodies and stayed there to get plastered. After a couple of Cunard types (I think) had been given a row by the bar staff they went back on the sunday lunch time in thick submarine surplus rollneck jumpers. Hidden beneath were hotwater bottles full of cold campbell's mixed veg soup, the neck of the hotwater bottles were hidden between their throats and the rollnecks of the jumpers. They lurched up to the bar and got the barstaff's attention by acting all drunk/hungover and then groaned and clutched their stomachs as if vomiting.

This of course squashed the hotwater bottles and the cold veg soup gushed out as if from their mouths, all over the bar, which they then started lapping up! What a picture. Best practical joke ever, I have always thought.

derekhore
26th September 2012, 07:20
I was there from 1970 a rear on smith cadet with tom Lester,terry Davies and nigel Davies.We had a 2 week induction then off for 2 6 month sea trips when we came back to the school for phase 1.Good memories of the school and also Standard house (where I bunked with Derek HORE) remember me Derek old chum? and also later t Merrifield Hall.

Steve Hodges ... there's a name from the past my friend, of course I remember you and your best mate Tom Lester .. as I was with Geoff Meadway!!

Send me a PM with your email address if you want a catch up!!

stephen hodges1
30th September 2012, 14:29
Steve Hodges ... there's a name from the past my friend, of course I remember you and your best mate Tom Lester .. as I was with Geoff Meadway!!

Send me a PM with your email address if you want a catch up!!
Can anyone remember doing that bloody horrible swimming test on phase 1
It was September overcast and bloody cold we had to get into our bathers jump in the cold water at the seamanship centre and swim out to a rowing boat that was held by Mitchell the instructor.well I swam out touched the boat shouted my name as per instructions but he didn't record it!when we got back into the hot showers he told me I would have to do the swim again at that point with goosebumos the size of strawberries just receding on me I nearly told him where to go but thought better of it as he was going to be our class instructor.

derekhore
1st October 2012, 10:50
Can anyone remember doing that bloody horrible swimming test on phase 1
It was September overcast and bloody cold we had to get into our bathers jump in the cold water at the seamanship centre and swim out to a rowing boat that was held by Mitchell the instructor.well I swam out touched the boat shouted my name as per instructions but he didn't record it!when we got back into the hot showers he told me I would have to do the swim again at that point with goosebumos the size of strawberries just receding on me I nearly told him where to go but thought better of it as he was going to be our class instructor.

Maybe he just didn't like you Steve!! :)

derekhore
29th July 2013, 16:07
I was at Portland Place pre-sea sept 72, phase 1 ONC Sept 73 to Feb 74 and Merrifield phase 3 April to Dec 75
Was with RFA, Bliss, Jones, Carter, Evans , Thomas (RIP) and others from BP, P&O, Irish Shipping and Shell. Summer 75 best time of my life. Goodies every evening, beach or park then Wellington every sat & sun.
Lecturers Gibson, Crookall, Hill, Tozer.
Played football in winter close to Argyles ground, had 500 watching us in first half and nobody in second half
Sat the rest at Warsash,

Did you ever know a Barry Challis - he was RFA and at Plymouth when I was there for phase 1?

drewg
1st August 2013, 21:57
I've been reading this page for ages and enjoying memories through the contributors. I dont know Barry Challis but seem to know a lot of the other names. I felt of course that i was an electric goalkeeper in front of 'thousands' outside Argyles ground (we lost!)

I was 'induction course' sept 1970, phase 1 from april '71 and went 'large' at Merrifield from sept '73. Big buds were Paul Baines, Bill Green, Jock Gillies, Binks Gilbert and Steve Lyons - amongst others.......

Remember lecturers from the incomparable chiefy Tozer to the brilliance of Freddy Weeks (he had to be that good to teach me navigation when i can't count to ten), the humour of Favata (a scots lowland italian jock), Johnny Joint (ship k), Alan Lester (really nice, but so easy to wind up!).

Remember loads about Plymouth and how good merchant navy (the real navy) were against the local skins and the royal navy (good at being tied up alongside!!)

Did all my tickets at plymouth and had mad celebrations at the 'goodies' (sad state now, the goodies, not me)) and 3 crowns on the Barbican. Anyone remember the girls hostel on Houndiscombe road??

derekhore
2nd August 2013, 08:03
Binksy & Jock Gillies were on my Phase 1 course, we were regulars at the 'Penny-Come'Quick' pub as Binksy was in 'love' with the landlords daughter at that time .. fav jukebox track was Maggie May - Rod Stewart!

Steve Lyons was a very good friend of mine - we went to the same school here in Torbay and although were both in BP I never came across him at sea until we joined Wallems (UK) - when we sailed together on numerous occasions when he was Chief Officer. He married Mandy, from the nurses home in Greenbank Road and brought her and their daughter away for a couple of trips.
He used to have an MG Midget and we traveled home each weekend from college!
Sadly Steve passed away a good few years ago now.

All of those lecturers names were involved when I was at Plymouth - there must be a good few more cadet names too that will ring bells for each of us!

ninabaker
2nd August 2013, 22:09
Binksy & Jock Gillies were on my Phase 1 course, we were regulars at the 'Penny-Come'Quick' pub as Binksy was in 'love' with the landlords daughter at that time .. fav jukebox track was Maggie May - Rod Stewart!

Steve Lyons was a very good friend of mine - we went to the same school here in Torbay and although were both in BP I never came across him at sea until we joined Wallems (UK) - when we sailed together on numerous occasions when he was Chief Officer. He married Mandy, from the nurses home in Greenbank Road and brought her and their daughter away for a couple of trips.
He used to have an MG Midget and we traveled home each weekend from college!
Sadly Steve passed away a good few years ago now.

All of those lecturers names were involved when I was at Plymouth - there must be a good few more cadet names too that will ring bells for each of us!


I socialised with that lot when they were on their Ph3 and I was on my Ph1 in the winter of 73-74. My own classmates were awful (as I have detailed elsewhere here) so this was my principal social circle. I think I have a photo somewhere but cannot track it down right now.
I went out with Ian Giddings during that period but it the relationship didnt flourish and i think he married not long after.

As for the lecturers - what was the name of the rotund navigation lecturer who was I think Czech? I recall his teaching technique consisted entirely of dictating to us out of the textbook we had all been expected to buy. Despite that rather antiquated (even then) method , I did manage to learn enough to get through the exams.

Tozer was a jem in his way - he might have been a very fierce dragon but he must have been devoted to getting us numpties through the signals tests. I was conspicuously useless at signals and had to go to all the extra classes he put on, just to scrape through - it was easily my worst subject.

N

drewg
3rd August 2013, 20:57
I kept in touch with Steve right until he went, lost touch with Mandy after that. I do remember 'Yorrick', he bunked next door to me at Merrifield, hence Nina is the redhead?

Lots of guys went off early, one down a tank with BP (Andy Parsons?), another hit by hatch cover (happy times!!??)

Saw two or three guys around London after I came ashore, cheerful that some Plymouth guys were still going in shipping. Even had a few beers with Ian Giddings, he was with the NI then.

Heart seems to have gone from Plymouth since they built the 'new' Drake centre............ how could they have knocked down the 'Unity'??

ninabaker
3rd August 2013, 22:51
Nina was and is "the redhead", indeed.

It is tragic how many people lost their lives young. I remember when we started our induction (July 1972) we were told that of the 30 in the intake, 1 was likely to have died by the time the rest got their 2nd mates tickets. Scary but I think it was true, although I dont now recall who of our particular batch lost the battle.

derekhore
4th August 2013, 07:36
I kept in touch with Steve right until he went, lost touch with Mandy after that. I do remember 'Yorrick', he bunked next door to me at Merrifield, hence Nina is the redhead?

Lots of guys went off early, one down a tank with BP (Andy Parsons?), another hit by hatch cover (happy times!!??)

Saw two or three guys around London after I came ashore, cheerful that some Plymouth guys were still going in shipping. Even had a few beers with Ian Giddings, he was with the NI then.

Heart seems to have gone from Plymouth since they built the 'new' Drake centre............ how could they have knocked down the 'Unity'??

Andy Parsons was on phase 1 with me ... he was best buddies with another BP cadet called John ??

Ian Giddings rings a bell too, names seem to come back when someone prompts the old brain cells!

Neil Henderson & Mike Evans (BP) were also on the induction course with me, but as I missed my planned phase 1 due to illness, we were never at Plymouth again together, though we did our first sea trip on the Trust.

cfarer
4th August 2013, 20:48
The Tectona was still going in the 70's .. used for survival courses etc.

Fisherman's Nose down on the Hoe, just a long from the Barbican was where we did all our radar courses.
Boatwork was done at Cattedown

Hi Tectona is still going strong and operating as a sail training vessel out of Plymouth.

charliepridham
6th August 2013, 19:11
I've been reading this page for ages and enjoying memories through the contributors. I dont know Barry Challis but seem to know a lot of the other names. I felt of course that i was an electric goalkeeper in front of 'thousands' outside Argyles ground (we lost!)

I was 'induction course' sept 1970, phase 1 from april '71 and went 'large' at Merrifield from sept '73. Big buds were Paul Baines, Bill Green, Jock Gillies, Binks Gilbert and Steve Lyons - amongst others.......

Remember lecturers from the incomparable chiefy Tozer to the brilliance of Freddy Weeks (he had to be that good to teach me navigation when i can't count to ten), the humour of Favata (a scots lowland italian jock), Johnny Joint (ship k), Alan Lester (really nice, but so easy to wind up!).

Remember loads about Plymouth and how good merchant navy (the real navy) were against the local skins and the royal navy (good at being tied up alongside!!)

Did all my tickets at plymouth and had mad celebrations at the 'goodies' (sad state now, the goodies, not me)) and 3 crowns on the Barbican. Anyone remember the girls hostel on Houndiscombe road??

With that list of names we must have been there at the same time!

I think Derek we may have overlapped by 1 term as many of your names are also familiar

And Nina if you are still reading this thread, We got dumped back in the RNC from Standard house in the spring term 1974 as there was insuffient room at Merrifield, You were there I can remember your help in consuming several bottles one night when I and around 4 others were celibrating passing something, so if I was in anyway part of your bad experiance I apoligize now!

derekhore
6th August 2013, 19:31
Hi Charlie ...

Yes - I am sure we met and overlapped at least a term!

Any other names come to mind that will revitalise the old brain cells?

ninabaker
6th August 2013, 20:35
With that list of names we must have been there at the same time!

I think Derek we may have overlapped by 1 term as many of your names are also familiar

And Nina if you are still reading this thread, We got dumped back in the RNC from Standard house in the spring term 1974 as there was insuffient room at Merrifield, You were there I can remember your help in consuming several bottles one night when I and around 4 others were celibrating passing something, so if I was in anyway part of your bad experiance I apoligize now!

Charlie,
I have no recollection of the drinkies, sadly. Maybe I overdid it! It was actually your lot in Phase3 that kept me sane in Phase 1 when all my class were being toads. I must try and find where my old pictures have got to as I am sure I have some pics of the gang in a pub.

N

charliepridham
7th August 2013, 08:41
My particular group was huge, so many that we were split along alphabetically lines on phase 3 with L and up going to Standard House so while on Phase 1 I was knocking around with Malcolm (Binks) Gilbert, Bill Green, Davis (Jock) Gillis, and John Cleverly by Phase 3 they all got into Merrifild and I saw less of them and made great friends with Dave Wheal, Andy Wimbow, Clive Spurrier etc for the second term several of us volunteered for the RNC to escape Standard house which although great fun was so crowded and noisy there was no way we would have passed anything!! so then I seem to remember we were put on the same floor as Nina and were allowed to come and go as we pleased here it was John Murray, Geoff Sizer, and Dave Wheal.
other names Jed Dixon (Died Young sadly) Noddy Payling (pretty sure I have the wrong spelling) Gary woolnough, more names are coming back all the time. Tim Charlesworth, Andy Charnly-Smith, Brian Morely,

Went back to Plymouth for a reunion in 2009 and met up with many of the above, had a great time, I seemed to be the only one that had left the sea completely most of the others were still involved like Paul Baines now captain of a super yacht in the Med, Andy Wimbow number 2 at the IMO (even has a dplomatic passport!) Mike Evans works there too Dave Wheal at the Marine accident lot, and many of the rest harbour masters like Tim Charlesworth at Plymouth or pilots around the South West. All so responsible - who would have thought back then anyone would trust any of us !

derekhore
7th August 2013, 09:03
My particular group was huge, so many that we were split along alphabetically lines on phase 3 with L and up going to Standard House so while on Phase 1 I was knocking around with Malcolm (Binks) Gilbert, Bill Green, Davis (Jock) Gillis, and John Cleverly by Phase 3 they all got into Merrifild and I saw less of them and made great friends with Dave Wheal, Andy Wimbow, Clive Spurrier etc for the second term several of us volunteered for the RNC to escape Standard house which although great fun was so crowded and noisy there was no way we would have passed anything!! so then I seem to remember we were put on the same floor as Nina and were allowed to come and go as we pleased here it was John Murray, Geoff Sizer, and Dave Wheal.
other names Jed Dixon (Died Young sadly) Noddy Payling (pretty sure I have the wrong spelling) Gary woolnough, more names are coming back all the time. Tim Charlesworth, Andy Charnly-Smith, Brian Morely,

Went back to Plymouth for a reunion in 2009 and met up with many of the above, had a great time, I seemed to be the only one that had left the sea completely most of the others were still involved like Paul Baines now captain of a super yacht in the Med, Andy Wimbow number 2 at the IMO (even has a dplomatic passport!) Mike Evans works there too Dave Wheal at the Marine accident lot, and many of the rest harbour masters like Tim Charlesworth at Plymouth or pilots around the South West. All so responsible - who would have thought back then anyone would trust any of us !

Lots of names there I remember, most of them in fact - Mike Evans was my best man and last I heard of him he was assistant harbour master at either Southampton or Portsmouth, having been at Falmouth for some time before that. Lost touch with him when I divorced my first wife some 10 years ago.
John Murray was the name I was trying to remember as the friend of Andy Parsons who died at sea.
Didn't know about Jed Dixon - sad news.
Scotty Carney was another friend at the time.

Never been back to Plymouth apart from shopping trips, never heard of any reunions!
One name I have never been able to trace was Geoff Meadway, BP cadet who I knew well and we were at Standard House together. BP put me in Merrifield Hall for my resits which was a pain, knew nobody then and spent most of the time commuting back home! Still, it was worth it in the end.

charliepridham
8th August 2013, 17:07
Derek if you want me to pass Mike your contact details PM me.
BTW your Discharge book number is spookily close to mine! R892945

Nina, If its any consolation I hated most of Phase 1 at the RNC as well!

When we left to go back to sea in December 71 I found myself bridge watchkeeping mostly, due to a shortage of certified 3rd mates so I was looking forward to returning to Plymouth and out ranking Chief Tozer with a half stripe, but by the time we returned we were in Civies and surprise surprise I found for signals suddenly his 98% pass rate was worth getting along with him and actual grew to quite like him!

Plymouth had calmed down a good bit as well, the skinhead trouble of the early 70's had abated, it had reached a head when an engineer cadet got bottled in the eye in one of the underpasses (Soper?). One of the reasons back then we used the Penny Come Quick

I also remember the first floor bathroom window being left so you could get back in, but I also remember some idiot going over rather than under the glass and falling through, the ambulance and blood gave us away, and getting back in after hours then depended on being in with who ever was manning the desk

derekhore
8th August 2013, 17:38
Derek if you want me to pass Mike your contact details PM me.
BTW your Discharge book number is spookily close to mine! R892945


Thanks Charlie .. but Mike has all my contact details as we used to exchange Christmas cards etc - but if you are in contact with him you can mention my name if you would be so kind.

Yes, those discharge numbers are a bit too close for comfort - was yours also issued in Plymouth, mine was on 16 September 1970!

If I remember correctly, one had to climb up a gutter pipe onto the roof of the tunnel linking the residential block to the canteen, then access through that window was possible!

charliepridham
10th August 2013, 15:29
Hopefully this picture may jog a few memories, I can't now recall why we were given the keys to the landrover or where we were going!
http://farm3.staticflickr.com/2883/9464755528_ca925424ce_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/89219640@N04/9464755528/)
and one of me a few months later now a married man! dangerous business the parties at Merrifield
http://farm4.staticflickr.com/3717/9464754620_93720618b4_z.jpg (http://www.flickr.com/photos/89219640@N04/9464754620/)

derekhore
11th August 2013, 16:38
Crikey!!

Yes, all names (& faces) I remember!

Problem I have is that I did Phase 1 with one group - and then, due to illness was put back 6 months or so and when I went back to Plymouth my old group had been and gone .. and I was with the next lot! I get names/faces muddled up.
The only advantage was that I was 3rd mate then so held rank over the Engineer cadets at the college!
Chiefy didn't like it though! :)

charliepridham
17th August 2013, 12:03
Earlier in the thread someone mentioned the Plume of Feathers and the band on Sunday lunchtime I actually have a digital recording of the Pheasant Pluckers! My wife and I played it the other day.
She like me remembers it being so crowded that you were effectively stood in the car park and had to pass your order and money over people heads and wait for your drinks to come back the same way. I think some folk gave up and used to go to the other pub and collect their pints before returning to the Plume!

One name from Phase 1 no one seems to have come up with was Steve Davis, he had retired by phase 3, smoked a pipe, he and his landrover always had a strong smell of dog about them, it was him we got roped in with Dartmoor rescue with. I used to see a fair bit of him later as I was living in Plymouth until 1983.

He took us for navigation and was particuarly good at being able to say "thats wrong" then "I think you will find you used the wrong SHA hour" or some such, I found knowing where it had gone wrong quickly got me better and I never had problems with that subject largly thanks to his groundwork.

derekhore
17th August 2013, 12:55
No recollection of 'Steve Davis' .. obviously a different phase 1 than me and then the phase 3 I was on he had gone.

Yes, the 'Pheasant Pluckers' were the first regular band I remember at the Plume of Feathers, frontman fiddler Jenkins! They made a live LP recording up there one Wednesday night which I was privileged enough to attend! It is still availble to purchase I think online.

They were followed by a band called 'Porrij' .. frontman was singer Dave, plus a banjo player Alan and guitarist John - along with various guests!
We used to frequent there very Sunday lunchtime, leaving Torbay in convoy at around 11:00am to be sure of getting to the front. Bottles of Newcastle Brown were handed back and fore at head height. The landladys son was called James but I cannot remember her name.
After time and a prolonged version of 'Camborne Hill' we used to torment the grockles at Spitchwick on our way home!

Happy days.

drewg
17th August 2013, 21:24
Wasn't Steve Davis the ex BI guy? How did anyone survive the drive home from the Plume on a Sunday?

Remember back at the RNC on phase 1 there was an unpopular pompous CC - had a french name (i 'forget' what it was), we had the porter call out a message for an urgent call by day and recorded it. Replayed it outside his door, at night after lights out, and poor chap ran off....... by the time he returned his cabin contents, bed and all had disappeared. It was all hanging out of our window. Poor chap, think he got the message.

Shared that RNC cabin (and i had upper bunk) with 'soapy' - he was glassed in a nightclub i seem to recall.

Going back further, i recall on induction course the warden - Bill Currie - came in to say that (unusually) anyone who would like to go home for the weekend could do so. One cadet shouted 'me', to which Bill said ' me what laddie?'. Instead of 'sir', the response of 'me wants to go home!' reduced us to tears of laughter and Bill to stunned silence. Have always recalled Derek as that cadet - but happy to be corrected.

derekhore
18th August 2013, 07:35
I think the most unliked CC was a guy called Jimmy Landrie (?) - is that the one you are thinking about?

Indeed you are correct, 'Me wants to go home for the weekend' was indeed me!! ... and to cap it off, Bill Currie let me!

:)

drewg
19th August 2013, 20:57
You are correct about Landrie - think some of the engineers were put out that we had 'been there' as it were. Anyway, enough said.
I apologise for being obscure, the guy i meant, his name actually was 'Forget' - but pronounced in the 'french' way (you couldn't make it up!).

I remember Charlie very well from very early days always in awe of clever buggers, saw you lots later on (where does a Triumph Spitfire come in?).

charliepridham
19th August 2013, 22:55
I met my now wife at the party held at Merrifield Hall spring 1974, she owned a spitfire and when we left the party, 8 of us traveled in (and on) said spitfire, back to her flat on one of the park roads off mutley plain. It eventually died traveling back from Tranmere later that year.

I can remember some of the vehicles owned by Phase 3 cadets better than the names and faces of their owners!

drewg
19th August 2013, 23:40
I am blessed (or cursed) with the ability to remember almost everyone and to know my own stupidity (we were lads). The good bit is that i remember the coffee place, the marquee, (forgive spelling). I remember going awol for a couple of weeks but showing up for coffee there. Wow the girls were real, ........ you know what i mean.

Tim charlesworth was another guy i remember as he was the only other guy my size (charlie you were in our league)

cblane2
20th August 2013, 01:21
Fred Weeks and 'Seaspeak'

charliepridham
20th August 2013, 08:40
Tim Charlesworth is still around, harbour master in plymouth now and with family down here in Cornwall I see him occassionally, he was indeed someone who made me feel short!

I do regret not taking more pictures of us all, my memory is shocking although I find stuff comes flooding back if its given a clue

Fred Weeks, there's a name! sailed with his nephew Bob Weeks, which is how I got to find out about Fred's hobby of collecting racing cars and making them road legal, tried to sell one to young Bob while still a Cadet apparently, on phoning the insurance company the girl Bob got on the phone had never heard of Lola so asked Bob if it was a fast car, "yes" was the reply, "Well how fast" asks the girl, "Don't know" says Bob "I have never got out of third" "Well how fast was that" asks the girl "A hundred and forty" says Bob who didn't get the insurance!

derekhore
22nd August 2013, 17:56
Tim Charlesworth I remember, though not from which phase - 1 or 3.
Scotty Carney is another name too.

Coffee over the road in the Marquee, spent quite a few breaks in there.

I only stayed at Merrifield Hall briefly whilst doing a Nav resit after phase 3, my phase 3 was in Standard House with Poppa Howard .. ideal for the station and trains home!
Never got to any of the parties at MH .. when I was there it was dead, I had the top most room all to myself!

After that I had digs in North Road East to save travelling to & from home each day, I had an MG Midget by then and shared digs with a Tim Corbett who had a Lotuus Elan.
Landlady was an old dear who made massive pasties once a week for tea, they used to hang over the edge of your plate! She loved to be taken out for a drive with the roof down - used to take her down onto the Hoe for an ice-cream!

LucyKnight
22nd August 2013, 18:28
No recollection of 'Steve Davis' .. obviously a different phase 1 than me and then the phase 3 I was on he had gone.

Yes, the 'Pheasant Pluckers' were the first regular band I remember at the Plume of Feathers, frontman fiddler Jenkins! They made a live LP recording up there one Wednesday night which I was privileged enough to attend! It is still availble to purchase I think online.

They were followed by a band called 'Porrij' .. frontman was singer Dave, plus a banjo player Alan and guitarist John - along with various guests!
We used to frequent there very Sunday lunchtime, leaving Torbay in convoy at around 11:00am to be sure of getting to the front. Bottles of Newcastle Brown were handed back and fore at head height. The landladys son was called James but I cannot remember her name.
After time and a prolonged version of 'Camborne Hill' we used to torment the grockles at Spitchwick on our way home!

Happy days.

The Plume of Feathers changed hands a few years ago. The son James had a few trips with Marconi as an R/O under his belt and now lives in Spain. The land lady was called Pam and had liver problems hence why her son left the sea and took over around 74.

Steve Davis who was mentioned, died a few years ago and lived near Yelverton. His wife is still alive.

derekhore
23rd August 2013, 09:23
Thanks Lucy - sadly the Plume is now 'just another pub' !! :(

LucyKnight
23rd August 2013, 16:58
Thanks Lucy - sadly the Plume is now 'just another pub' !! :(

You mentioned the group Porrij which followed the 'Pheasant Pluckers' but it wasn't really the same callibre. I remember the Dave , the one that sang well. I was driving back around 76 in my Fiat 127 and had to brake suddenly in fog because a dartmoor pony jumped out in front. I stopped in time and he crashed his car into the back of mine shunting me and my car throught the air. The pony wasn't hurt, but I joined the SS Alinda a few weeks later with a very stiff neck.

Another pub where the pheasant pluckers played was at the 'Halfway House' which was located half way between Yelverton and Tavistock. The landlord was ex services and known as 'Chesty'. I think his wife was called Maureen.

LucyKnight
23rd August 2013, 17:18
Don't recall a John Hill at all, although I did spend a couple of months at Merriefield Hall when I had to do a resit so he might have been at Standard House then.

Probably yes re the discipline - though I still think the college liked to compete with the RN .. especially in Chiefy Tozer's eyes!!!


John Hill was certainly at the hall of residence around 78 as I remember going back for coffee after the sailing school. He was also lecturing when Ron moved from the Goodies to the 'Three Crowns' and he used to go there lunchtimes with another lecturer. After John there was one called Ted who had been a c/off and was on the BSC nautical studies degree. I remember making the mistake of going back for coffee after the GX and he had invitied these two woman and I am afraid their logic totally baffled me. He seemed to think it was amusing, I didn't. They claimed to have boyfriends at sea. I didn't work for the same company neither did I know any lads who did. They gave me this lecture why I should give up the sea because how terrible it was for them when their so called boyfriends came home they gave them all these tales of what they got up to abroad. Therefore in their barmy opinions I should throw my career awayto please them. I used to wonder how the men managed to find them and my sympathy to anyone who actually sailed with those types on board ship if they did manage to snare an unfortunate man.

charliepridham
24th August 2013, 08:50
John Hill was a lecturer as early as 73 for sure, he took over from Pop Haward at Standard House I thought around 75. Although he didn't teach me we would often have him join us of an evening when he liked to portray himself as one of the lads, bit of a pest when it came to poaching girl friends as I recall, tried it with my wife!

As for the women that hung around the college there were a bunch of them still doing it when I did mates in 76 and masters in 80 all a bit sad really

Also sad about the Plume, when we went back for the Reunion in 09 it had originally been an idea to go to the Plume for a Sunday lunchtime but it was an eating gastro type pub and we were told we had to book tables, didn't bother in the end. the goodies was still open but we didn't venture in as it had gone Goth and looked very dark and dingy (It also looked a lot smaller!) so we ended up in the Jamie which oddly was one of the few occasions I had ever been in it

derekhore
24th August 2013, 11:55
I guess John Hill was at Standard House when I spent time briefly at Merrifield then, Pop Howard was always at SH when I was there.

Lost touch with Plymouth once my 2nd mates was completed, I was sent to Bristol's Brunel College after that - hated the place ... and did all the practical/miscellaneous upgrades at Warsash.

It looks entirely different now, went down last year to see the Drakes Circus shopping complex and walked up to Portland Place - could still hear the distant tones of Chiefy blowing in the wind!!
Not a uniform in sight in town though - no surprise there then.

Will be up in Princetown next week, may just pop into the plume for old times sake - though won't be drinking Newcastle Brown!

LucyKnight
24th August 2013, 15:33
I guess John Hill was at Standard House when I spent time briefly at Merrifield then, Pop Howard was always at SH when I was there.

Lost touch with Plymouth once my 2nd mates was completed, I was sent to Bristol's Brunel College after that - hated the place ... and did all the practical/miscellaneous upgrades at Warsash.

It looks entirely different now, went down last year to see the Drakes Circus shopping complex and walked up to Portland Place - could still hear the distant tones of Chiefy blowing in the wind!!
Not a uniform in sight in town though - no surprise there then.

Will be up in Princetown next week, may just pop into the plume for old times sake - though won't be drinking Newcastle Brown!


I would bother dropping in to the Plume of Feather. James tripled the size of the place years ago and built a bunk house. Very geared up for camping. If you google it you will see some of the comments. I'll leave it at that.

How could you be so horrible about Brunel college. The same building Muller house housed all the radio students, Marine electronics diploma and certificate, deck pre-sea training and deck second mates, masters and I think extra masters. Also aircraft radio who were mostly Arabs apart from the odd one or two British. I knew several from the deck side and they seemed to thoroughly enjoy their time there.

I spent an extremely miserable year (off the scale) training at Plymouth Autumn 72 till Summer 73 and apart from one in my class (there were two classes running parallel) the others in my class were rude, crude and abusive off the scale and so immature it was unbelievable. I think wearing a uniform went to their heads self importance wise. It was like having to have a split personality. I was the first girl they had had there. I had to have one personna during the day to survive and then just after the first term I saved my sanity by throwing myself into water sports and being myself outside college hours mixing with a large number of water sports mad students from the Poly. At the end of the college summer term 1973 I took off with a back pack on inter-rail which had started the year before and on the inter- rail ticket then you could go right down to Greece and all over Europe for a month. I decided at the end of the month I wasn't going home and back to that awful lot so I headed for Greece and arrived at Athens the day before it ran out and caught a ferry to Crete. I then slept for 6 weeks under a tree at the back of a beach called Matala. I blame that madness on the state those sexist immature students in Plymouth had driven me to. The lecturers knew how they were behaving and did nothing. When I went down and told them why I wasn't returning when I finally got back Mr Pink told me on my own that the same ones that got on his nerves too. A few weeks after working in a hotel I rang up Brunel. They agreed to let me transfer to the 2nd year but the education dept giving out grants wouldn't let me until Mr Mitchel (who was in charge would give permission and he wouldn't. Five weeks went on and Brunel told me if I couldn't come up straight away they wouldn't have me. It would take me 2 hours to get the phone answered from Exeter |(Devon County) and then went up after about 6 wks knowing there was no accomodation because the Poly had gone back but they would let me sleep in a sleeping bag in the hall opposite the SU bar. Another Poly student took pity on me and took me back to his joint flat and I slept on their couch and started the second year about 6 weeks into the term. Had terrible accomodation problems there but that wasn't the colleges fault. Brunel hadn't had any female students the year before but another girl who had a long standing boyfriend on the 2nd mates course transferred from Norwood into the parallel class on the 2nd yr. . I was on the 3 yr MRRT and she was on the 2 year MRGC + 1 term radar. I have a lot to thank Brunel for. If it hadn't been for them I would never have got to sea.

I did however return to the Poly in 1977/78 to take the MED and MEC courses paying for myself. As I had a morgage and was off pay for the 2nd term I couldn't afford to go to Brunel and Bristol. Plymouth was commuting distance. If I could I would have definintely applied to Brunel.

I used to chat to quite a few of the deck dept in the canteen and even made the mistake of going out with a Shell 3rd mate. Well we all make mistakes and remember going to a party that some of the RFA lads had at their flat at the bottom of Ashley Hill. I always found the ones back from sea taking their deck tickets very friendly and entertaining. I never heard any of them being critical of the place.

derekhore
27th August 2013, 13:24
He-he ... horses for courses I guess Lucy!

Hated Bristol where I did my mates resits but got on okay in Plymouth, where I requested to go for the resits but Company said no!
Plymouth was closer for me commuting wise, but I had to have digs in Bristol in Seymour Avenue (Mrs Steele) .. awful place, their cat used to get onto the beds and it had fleas .. need I say more!
I think I shared with 3 other students who were doing medical courses of one sort or another, very much on my own there and glad to get everything over with and away back to sea!

LucyKnight
15th October 2013, 14:59
[QUOTE=derekhore;699123]He-he ... horses for courses I guess Lucy!

LucyKnight
15th October 2013, 15:11
Derek, if you want to be reminded of your halcyon college days in Plymouth before you encountered Brunel and Bristol or should I spell it 'Bristles' as the locals pronounced it then which you said you hated, try googling the following site (if you haven't already):- It is a new book written by an ex Shell employee who took their deck cadetship in Plymouth in the early seventies. It is called under a yellow sky and if you google Under a yellow sky.com and click on extracts and one of the four headings on the site are clips about the nautical college and hostel life in Plymouth in the early 70's and well as life on a Shell Tanker as a first trip cadet.

I can quite empathise will him on his first trip and being treated like the lowest form of life because on my first Shell Tanker (for 6 1/2 months) I was told that junior R/O's should be treated like first trip cadets - the lowest form of life. Maybe B.P. was a bit more pussy- catish than Shell. I think it was about making one into a 'rufty tufty sailor'.

Anyway the author mentions one name that features quite a bit on this site who ran one of the hostels and taught you signals.

Brunel might not seem so bad after you've been reminded of Plymouth.

derekhore
15th October 2013, 15:16
Before looking I am guessing 'Chiefy Tozer' is the name you are referring to with regards to signals!

I will now take a look.

My view of Plymouth & Bristol will not change however ... the first was fine, the latter was not!

derekhore
15th October 2013, 15:26
Interesting views Simon Hall has!
Firstly, the guys name was Tozer, not Rozer - and yes, he was ex-RN etc ... but certainly not as bad as made out. In fact, at the end of each college phase all our group would take Chiefy (he didn't mind being called that) out for a drink or 6 .. which invariably led to the singing of bawdy songs etc, usually led by him.
In my time there (71-77'ish) he was only in charge of signals & communications, he took inspection each morning on the teaching block roof before flag-break .. and also took drill on Saturday mornings. He was not then, to my knowledge, in charge of any residential block.

Still, each to their own opinion I guess - that is what makes the world go round!

Jon T.
15th October 2013, 19:49
Wow!
Some character assassination that. Not the man I knew at all.
Was the name changed to protect the innocent?
Also Chiefy was a Chief-Yeoman of Signals, which I presume is still a CPO, but gives more reason for him being ic signals.
Got a signals prize, not that I was particularly good. However, I could play cricket and during Phase 1 we won the inter Hall cricket trophy which pleased Chiefy no end.
Happy days.

derekhore
15th October 2013, 22:58
Wow!
Some character assassination that. Not the man I knew at all.
Was the name changed to protect the innocent?
Also Chiefy was a Chief-Yeoman of Signals, which I presume is still a CPO, but gives more reason for him being ic signals.
Got a signals prize, not that I was particularly good. However, I could play cricket and during Phase 1 we won the inter Hall cricket trophy which pleased Chiefy no end.
Happy days.

I sense something personal between the author of the book and Chiefy!

Yes, he was a Chief Yeoman - & I think that is also a CPO in the RN.
Sadly he passed away a while back now - but that character assassination is rather unfair to say the least.

LucyKnight
16th October 2013, 12:31
Graham Danton was a regular on our local Westward televison doing the nightly weather forecast.

I still have a near pristine copy of his "Dantons Seamanship"!!

Yesterday's Plymouth Evening Herald had picture of those Westward day's incuding Augustus J Honeybun usually known as 'Gus Honeybun, the infernal rabbit, who continued his dratted life with TSW. One deck officer in the GX (Sailing school) told me and I don't know if it was true that just before their deck ticket exams the above lecturer told them to ask him any questions they wanted to and one replied 3 bunny hops and turn around please . He was supposed to have walked out in disgust. He wasn't known for his sense of humour.

If you google the above lecturer's name followed by TSW you will see some pictures of him along with the galleon which was the logo for Westward television.

When I worked as a sound recordist with TSW on a news crew after being an engineer with them, we used to turn up at events with a chorus of ' Have you brought Gus Honey bun with you. One day the cameraman was on form and replied No I've stuck a 12 bore up his a**e and blasted his head off. I cringed just imaging the complaint that were going to follow but nothing got said. We were supposed to behave ourselves PR wise.

derekhore
16th October 2013, 13:18
Many a happy child watched in the afternoon to see Gus do his bunny hops for their birthday!

I think it was more entertaining watching the humour of Ian Stirling or Judi Spiers, especially when Gus turned the lights out or had a problem waggling his ears!

bdun41251
25th October 2013, 17:45
Can anyone remember doing that bloody horrible swimming test on phase 1
It was September overcast and bloody cold we had to get into our bathers jump in the cold water at the seamanship centre and swim out to a rowing boat that was held by Mitchell the instructor.well I swam out touched the boat shouted my name as per instructions but he didn't record it!when we got back into the hot showers he told me I would have to do the swim again at that point with goosebumos the size of strawberries just receding on me I nearly told him where to go but thought better of it as he was going to be our class instructor.

Hi all. I was in Plymouth 69/70 and 71/72 in J19A. I remember this test all too well, for our test Favata took us out past the outer breakwater on Tectona and may us jump into the drink and swim to an inflatable life raft.. Within 10 minutes there were 6 very sick cadets spewing breakfast inside the raft..... lol good times!

Jon T.
25th October 2013, 19:06
There in 69 and 71, counting back from bdun's post I reckon it was J17A.
The liferaft exercise certainly brought back happy memories! Raft launched upside down, slow puncture so needed constant pumping and for some reason one poor sod had to take clothes off and put them back on again, we all agreed that was not going to happen. Smokes in watertight container eased the experience.
Another questionable exercise was the Drakes Island trip. I can't remember the exact purpose of spending, I think, three days there but I recall taking soundings from a canoe, abseiling and looking around the old Naval gun emplacements and tunnels.
Survived it all and whenever down in Plymouth try to make the effort to see some of the old haunts.

(Smoke)

LucyKnight
31st October 2013, 19:34
Another book which has recently been written by a ex Shell cadet, then 3/O who spent their study time at Portland Sq. Plymouth in the early 70's is called From Watford to Woomooloola by John Moxham. If you google the Amazon site it has the search inside facility.

Phil_the_runner
1st November 2013, 17:50
I was at Plymouth RNC 1970-72 Phase 1 OND engineering.
Would be interested if anyone has any photos from that period or knows what happened to the trophies that were in the glass cabinet in the reception area by the front door.

LucyKnight
1st November 2013, 18:06
I was at Plymouth RNC 1970-72 Phase 1 OND engineering.
Would be interested if anyone has any photos from that period or knows what happened to the trophies that were in the glass cabinet in the reception area by the front door.

I don't know whether you live in the Plymouth area. If you do visit there are various places with archive photos and film. On the Barbican, next to where the artist Lenkevitz painted there is the Barbican archives which has many photos and books published about Plymouth . At the end of Durnford St, after the rbt at the Stonehouse end is the old Royal William yard which house the South West archives and has all the Television South West archives from 62 when Westward TV started. If you google Plymouth archives you will see some sites. There have been loads of books published which have old photos from different eras in them. I've certainly seen some of Portland Place.

If you google 'History of Higher education Plymouth and scroll down there is a 1970 picture of the Polytechnic building (it changed in 1970 from being called the technical college) and it includes the navigation teaching block and the edge of the residential block

Phil_the_runner
1st November 2013, 18:21
Thanks for the very quick feedback Lucy!
Unfortunately I don't live in Plymouth, I live North west UK.
I've been back down to Plymouth only twice in all the years since I was there ...(last time was this summer when I walked through what is now the university campus, asking a few questions about the old place ..to be met mostly with puzzled looks... and then had a beer in the Jamie before giving up my forlorn quest for information on the past) ...
I have some geat memories of the 2 years I spent down there, but haven't got a single photo or memento to show for it ... pity really, had some great fun and friendships there ..
I wondwered whether there might be something at the Maritime Museum in Greenwich, particularly looking for copies of Furness Withy Magazines from 70-74 (I was with Houlder Bros).
Any other suggestions would be much appreciated.
Many thanks again
Phil

LucyKnight
2nd November 2013, 15:00
Post 124 should have read
Watford to Woolloomooloo by John Moxley

Jon T.
2nd November 2013, 16:22
Post 124 should have read
Watford to Woolloomooloo by John Moxley

Think I prefer medical text books by Dr J Moxham.


Jon T.(Smoke)

John Moxley
2nd November 2013, 18:05
Think I prefer medical text books by Dr J Moxham.


Jon T.(Smoke)

Thanks for that, Jon, you're entitled to your opinion but luckily not everyone shares it:

"This is a very well written book that will entertain the reader from start to finish........it is an excellent read and I would highly recommend this book" (Shipping Today and Yesterday, August 2013)

Actually, I've heard Dr Moxham's book is a good read too.

derekhore
11th February 2014, 13:37
Hi Lucy ... did you see the piece last night on BBC 1's "Inside-Out" programme with Sam Smith .. the part about 'God-TV' taking over the old Palace theatre for their UK studios?
They must have money to burn looking at the current state of the place!

beautripp
12th February 2014, 15:46
Hi everyone,
I am a final year student at Plymouth University studying Navigation and Maritime Science. I am currently undertaking a research project into seafarers opinions on piracy. If you would be able to complete my survey it would be very helpful! Thank you.

https://qtrial.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_1Ya2LlNnxYZBswd

derekhore
12th February 2014, 16:53
Hi everyone,
I am a final year student at Plymouth University studying Navigation and Maritime Science. I am currently undertaking a research project into seafarers opinions on piracy. If you would be able to complete my survey it would be very helpful! Thank you.

https://qtrial.qualtrics.com/SE/?SID=SV_1Ya2LlNnxYZBswd

I started it - but then realised it doesn't really apply to us retired 'oldies'!! :(

Good luck with it all.

beautripp
12th February 2014, 17:08
I started it - but then realised it doesn't really apply to us retired 'oldies'!! :(

Good luck with it all.

Thanks very much for trying!

LucyKnight
12th February 2014, 17:48
Hi Lucy ... did you see the piece last night on BBC 1's "Inside-Out" programme with Sam Smith .. the part about 'God-TV' taking over the old Palace theatre for their UK studios?
They must have money to burn looking at the current state of the place!

I think youv'e got the wrong location. According the the Plymuff 'erald, it is the old Millenium club which had originally been a theatre. I think it was also the Majestic. That's on the opposite side of the road and toward the centre. The project started about a year ago and if you google God TV Plymouth Herald it will bring up plenty of info and pictures. It attracted a very large number from around the country last month apparently and they provisionally booked about 500 hotel rooms I seem to remember. Might be useful for business when they turn the Civic Centre into a hotel soon and move that to behind the library. The ground floor will become the library and the present museum and library will merge to become a history centre. Sounded facinating until I read they will exhibity Scott of Antartica skis next to Beryl Cook next to the legend Gus Honeybun.

derekhore
13th February 2014, 12:43
My error - I did mean 'Majestic' ... but somehow wrote 'Palace' !!

It's my age! :(

LucyKnight
14th February 2014, 15:50
My error - I did mean 'Majestic' ... but somehow wrote 'Palace' !!

It's my age! :(

Next time you hold a reunion why don't you meet up at the 'Old Majestic' and repent for your 'Spot the Grot' contests and 'Brown bag' evenings. It might be different from the local boozers.

derekhore
14th February 2014, 15:59
Next time you hold a reunion why don't you meet up at the 'Old Majestic' and repent for your 'Spot the Grot' contests and 'Brown bag' evenings. It might be different from the local boozers.

Probably - though I have never been to any reunion for Plymouth Nautical College - never heard of any at all! :(

charliepridham
14th February 2014, 16:48
We held one back a few years now (Chris Houghton was the main man doing the donkey work) I think there were around 50 of us, but based at the Holiday Inn! my Majestic days are long gone

LucyKnight
21st February 2014, 14:12
To any who drank in the Fisherman's pub Lambay Hill near the late Commercial pub which closed for good the end of last year, 'the Fisherman's' has now 'Crossed the Bar too'. Features in today's Plymouth Herald.
(Lambay Hill was across the road and just up from Fisher's Nose). There was a mention of the 'Navy' on the Barbican going the same way a short while ago.

derekhore
26th February 2014, 16:29
Had a look around Portland Place and the old RNC site yesterday whilst in Plymouth.

Wouldn't know it now - very sad to see the shopping monstrosity that has replaced the 'Goodies' and the old 'PennyComeQuick' pub has gone .. used to be my local! :(

LucyKnight
27th February 2014, 14:13
Had a look around Portland Place and the old RNC site yesterday whilst in Plymouth.

Wouldn't know it now - very sad to see the shopping monstrosity that has replaced the 'Goodies' and the old 'PennyComeQuick' pub has gone .. used to be my local! :(

The Goodies building is still there, albeit boarded up, just outside the new shopping complex at the top of Mayflower St slightly set back. It seems that a lot of new places are opening to quote in 'forgotton streets' eg Ebrington Street. With the vast and expanding student population and purpose built accomodation blocks the clubs open on their doorsteps and the older places die are made redundant. Sign of the times. They will eventually develop the rather dismal looking bottom end of town known now as the West end. The powers to be are saying now there are too many shops and there needs to be more accomodation and businesses in the centre. With no airport and the land due to be developed, a very slow rail link which is out of action now due to the storm damage at Dawlish and no motorway to Plymouth I don't think it will attract too many businesses.

derekhore
27th February 2014, 14:30
Have to admit I missed the boarded up Goodies - but I did see the old Jamie still standing as we went past.

a very slow rail link which is out of action now due to the storm damage at Dawlish...

.... but if they open/develop the scenic route via Okehampton & Melden - they will flock in!! :)

Paignton to Paddington - 6hrs 40mins!! (via Newton Abbot & Plymouth)

LucyKnight
5th April 2014, 13:46
If anyone is wanting photos from the Nav college or Plymouth Tech/Poly. I went down to the Plymouth and South Devon Records office, Claire Place, Cattdown for another reason and hit a brick wall so I decided to ask if they had any old college photos. Apparentely while the old Western Morning news and Evening Herald are on microfiche at the City central library, all the rushes of the unused photos were kept and these negatives handed to the records office. they system is this:-

Request the hand written ledger of newspaper negatives for the year. Then wade through and within 15 mins of looking at two ledgers 1961 and 1961 - 63, before being chucked out because they were closing, I had found several entries re Navigation college Speech days and Plymouth Tech Rag weeks. Alongside these entries were a box no. The next stage is to request the box which contains many negatives. Although only one would be used in the newspaper, it was usual for the photographers to take many and all these seem to have been kept in negative form. The records office supply you with a light box to view them. Official rules are you should request up to 3 items in advance, make an appointment to view them. If you want photostats the cheapest way is to fill in a form agreeing to copyright, pay 5 and have it electronically sent to your e-mail. This does not allow you to use them for books, put on site etc. You would have to discuss, negotiate that with them.

The only photo that is on line for general viewing is when the nav college was built in 50's and picture of 3 cadets + 2 middle aged men (lecturers probably) on top of the roof looking at a sextant. That can be googled on line, Plymouth record office and fill in box 'navigation college digital photo' and it will bring it up.

kevancorcoran
6th April 2014, 18:38
Derek if you want me to pass Mike your contact details PM me.
BTW your Discharge book number is spookily close to mine! R892945

Nina, If its any consolation I hated most of Phase 1 at the RNC as well!

When we left to go back to sea in December 71 I found myself bridge watchkeeping mostly, due to a shortage of certified 3rd mates so I was looking forward to returning to Plymouth and out ranking Chief Tozer with a half stripe, but by the time we returned we were in Civies and surprise surprise I found for signals suddenly his 98% pass rate was worth getting along with him and actual grew to quite like him!

Plymouth had calmed down a good bit as well, the skinhead trouble of the early 70's had abated, it had reached a head when an engineer cadet got bottled in the eye in one of the underpasses (Soper?). One of the reasons back then we used the Penny Come Quick

I also remember the first floor bathroom window being left so you could get back in, but I also remember some idiot going over rather than under the glass and falling through, the ambulance and blood gave us away, and getting back in after hours then depended on being in with who ever was manning the desk

Charlie, with spookily close Discharge book numbers in mind, mine is R892946. I can't recall any names I have seen here, I really am rubbish at recalling names, but did do my induction course at Plymouth, September 1970, staying in the accomodation block in Portland Square.

derekhore
6th April 2014, 19:07
Charlie Pridham .. R892945

Kevan Corcoran .. R892946

Me .. R892949

All issued in Plymouth I guess .. and all around 16 September 1970 - we just need 2 others to fill the gap!!

I also did my Induction Course at the same time .. staying in the same place!

kevancorcoran
6th April 2014, 19:34
I guess we must have all been in the same induction class. If I remember correctly the forms and photos I took with me to Plymouth and they obtained the Discharge Book and British Seamans Identity Card for me before leaving for home two weeks later.

derekhore
27th July 2014, 07:21
With regards to the Tectona - she is still afloat and currently moored up on the Barbican!!

A few pics from yesterday here:

http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/502394/title/tectona/cat/531

http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/502386/title/tectona/cat/531

http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/502378/title/tectona/cat/531

Steve Fisher
3rd October 2014, 11:06
Just found this through a friend. Brought back some great memories of Phase 1 & 3, I had some funny times.
Fell through the gardner's roof opposite the RNC on a short-cut back from the pub. Hospital, crutches, time off lectures!! Chasing innocent pedestrians through the subways on a motorbike, stealing (trying to) a coach, debauchery at the Plume & Feathers on Dartmoor, flooding a complete deck of the RNC.... how childish!! 52 now, not much has changed, own a pub.

charliepridham
3rd October 2014, 18:06
Just found this through a friend. Brought back some great memories of Phase 1 & 3, I had some funny times.
Fell through the gardner's roof opposite the RNC on a short-cut back from the pub. Hospital, crutches, time off lectures!! Chasing innocent pedestrians through the subways on a motorbike, stealing (trying to) a coach, debauchery at the Plume & Feathers on Dartmoor, flooding a complete deck of the RNC.... how childish!! 52 now, not much has changed, own a pub.


Glad to hear you kept the traditions going!