Working for the Royal Navy Submarine Service is much more than a job. It’s a demanding and dauntless lifestyle that asks a lot of the brave men and women who serve within it, and their families. Taking care of submariners’ and their families’ mental health is central to the wellbeing of these individuals, their loved ones, and the success of the service as a whole.
Remembering and recognising the submariners who have lost their lives is one of the ways we can help families, friends, and shipmates of the fallen to find peace in the face of tragedy. Since 1945, 450 submariners have died while serving. And in the years before, between, and during the two World Wars, some 5,000 men made the ultimate sacrifice for their country. But there is nowhere dedicated to honouring them, until now.
The Submariner Memorial Appeal was set up to create a fitting tribute to submariners and their families. Working together with the Submarine Service’s mental health project, HMS Oardacious, we are raising £300,000 to fund the creation of an iconic monument at the National Memorial Arboretum. It will be a vital place for personal reflection, repair, and renewal, and somewhere for the submarine community to come together as a family in remembrance.
The Submariner Memorial Appeal is a registered charity set up to create a fitting memorial to submariners who have lost their lives in the Service and to the sacrifice of their families. It was inspired by a groundswell of feeling in the submarine community that such a memorial was needed, formally expressed by the Submariners Association by a unanimous vote at its 2019 AGM. This feeling was also shared by the serving arm of the community and Rear Admiral Submarines set up a Board to take on the project. 2019 was taken up by putting the Board together, investigating ways to take the project forward and raising seed-corn funds to get the project running.
We are hugely grateful to HRH Prince William who as Commodore-in-Chief Submarines supports the appeal and has agreed to open the memorial.
Members of the Board
Vice Admiral Peter Wilkinson CB CVO
Peter spent 20 years as an operational submariner, he commanded Otter, Superb and Vanguard. His final submarine appointment was as Captain of the Second Submarine Squadron, based in Plymouth.
Rear Admiral Jon Westbrook CBE
Jon is a third generation submariner who spent 23 years in operational submarine appointments including: submarine command, Captain Submarine Sea Training and Commodore of both the Devonport and Faslane Flotillas.
Commander Tom Herman OBE Royal Navy
40 Years in boats and now Submarine Flotilla Secretary helping bringing the serving and retired arms together.
Captain Richard Blackwell Royal Navy
Richard spent 34 years in the Royal Navy as a Logistics Officer, serving in HM Submarines Resolution and Trenchant earlier in his career.
Rear Admiral Steve Lloyd CBE
Captain Paul Quinn OBE Royal Navy
Paul Quinn OBE is a retired Captain RN, who served as a Logistics Officer in HMS REVENGE and HMS TRAFALGAR, as well as frigates and a carrier. After the RN he ran the Royal Naval Association for 8 and a half years. He is a trustee of the Naval Families Federation and the Forces Pension Society,
and was a founding trustee of the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity
Commodore Jim Perks OBE Royal Navy
Commodore Submarine Service
We Remember Submariners
Served 32 years, mostly on Swiftsure and Trafalgar class submarines retiring as a Chief MEM. Ian is now honoured to be Chairman of We Remember Submariners
Captain Mike Davis-Marks OBE Royal Navy
Media and Communications
Mike served in the Royal Navy for 36 years, as a member of the RN Submarine Service, culminating in the command of HMS Turbulent. He now runs a Social Entrepreneurship business, incubating ‘for profit’ businesses that have social purpose.
Lieutenant Hugo Mitchell-Heggs Royal Navy
Hugo is currently in his 10th year of service as a Royal Navy Submariner, having operated as a Marine Engineering Officer on Vanguard Class Submarines. He recently lead the HMS Oardacious campaign, a team of 4 serving Submariners who rowed 3,000 miles across the Atlantic Ocean, fundraising over £110,000 for Submarine Community Mental Health.
I joined the Navy at 16 and served for 9 years mainly in Submarines. My father was also a submariner. After leaving the Navy I studied business management at university and went on to have a successful career which in the main was in the brewery sector. Following a life changing accident in 2010 I now work in the voluntary sector and as a part of this am the North West wreath coordinator for the charity We Remember Submariners as well as the National Treasurer for the Submariners Association.
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