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When you found out you were coming back to Dartmouth was there anything you were particularly looking forward to? Any naval officer of my rank would absolutely love the chance to come back here as the Commanding Officer simply because it means so much to us individually and to us a fighting service. Just saying the name Dartmouth to any naval officer engenders a feeling of real pride and fond memories. So coming back here as the Captain and the thought of immersing myself back into this unique and very special college and town is just fantastic.


Where were you prior to coming here?


I was commanding HMS Ark Royal and HMS Illustrious, followed by a very short five months in the Ministry of Defence before I took up my appointment here as the Captain, so I am very lucky that I understand what is required of a young naval officer now, having come straight from the


front line at sea. I hope I can at least impart a bit of that recent experience and 27-years in the Navy to a new generation of young men and women coming through my doors here at Dartmouth. The inevitable challenges facing the country in the 21st Century will demand the best people, trained well and given the right kit to do the job. I think we do the training bit very well here, but I would say that wouldn’t I!


Where were you born and brought up?


I was born in Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire and spent most of my formative years in Cheshire before joining the Royal Navy in 1985.


Do you have family? Are they here with you? Yes, my wife Karen, who is a doctor, lives here In Dartmouth with me along with my four sons who are aged between eight and 12. It wasn’t that long ago now that new boys coming to Dartmouth were 13 years old. For my sons it’s a great adventure


playground but hopefully they will all join up in due course!


What do you do with your free time?


I love fine dining, skiing and sailing and trying to help the children with their homework – although I am finding I have to scratch my head more and more as they get older. With the cadets and the children, life is never dull!


Would you recommend Navy life to any budding recruits?


If any young person is looking for challenge, excitement, a unique way of life that offers different experiences every single day and the privilege of working as a tight knit team, responsible for other people’s lives and for millions of pounds worth of equipment, then being a navy officer is just the job for you. Be in no doubt it can be hard and sometimes demanding work but, in my view, it sure beats the commuter train. It is the most wonderful lifestyle and I would do it all again if I had the chance.•


Stoke Gabriel Lodgings


Newly-built interior-designed Luxury 5* Bed & Breakfast. Stunning views overlooking village and River Dart.


Warm, Cosy and Welcoming. Afternoon Cream Tea on arrival. Three Ensuite Bedrooms with Balconies. Open All Year. Free WiFi. Local Fishing, Boating, Sailing & Walking


Badgers Retreat, Orchard Close, Paignton Road, Stoke Gabriel, Devon TQ9 6SX Tel: 01803 782003


See us at www.stokegabriellodgings.com


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