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Ram’s the man

● Members of the team who will be tackling Mount Kilimanjaro later this year

Kilimanjaro climbers

TWO sailors from HMS Raleigh are spearheading Navy Climb 2010 to clamber to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro, the 5,896m peak also known as the Roof of Africa. PO Craig ‘Chewie’ Hewitt and CPO Ali James, the main organisers of the challenge, will be joined by 20 others on the September climb which wil raise money for the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity and the Royal British Legion. Chewie, the originator of the idea, said: “I’ve always wanted the chance to organise a charity event, and to take part in some adventurous training, but being at sea on deployments has meant that it has been difficult for me to do both in the past. “I’m now at HMS Raleigh until the end of the year and I’ve just got

my promotion to petty officer, so I thought that this was a good time to get involved and achieve both aims.” Ali, a divisional officer within Corporate Squadron, was keen to share her fundraising experience: “I’ve been involved in a number of fundraising activities in the past such as running the London Marathon and climbing the Great Wall of China. “By putting ourselves through this arduous trek to climb Kilimanjaro,

we hope to raise funds and awareness of these two often-forgotten charities.

ex-Service personnel. “As a serving person you never know when you or the person standing next to you may need the help of these organisations and that’s why it is important for us all to do our bit.” Support the team at


“Both do a fabulous job in providing support to serving and

● Maj Phil Packer and Marine Andy Grant walk together on the route of the London Marathon

Picture: Handan Erek

INJURED Marine Andrew Grant

marathon effort One Marine’s


former Army Maj Phil Packer to complete the 26 miles of the London Marathon in aid of the Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families


Andy was seriously wounded in Afghanistan in

February 2009 when he and a friend were caught in an IED explosion triggered by a tripwire. Andy sustained shrapnel wounds in all his limbs, the bones in his right leg were smashed, and his femoral artery severed – he was in an induced coma for two weeks at Selly Oak Hospital where he spent three months in total, then moved to the Defence Rehabilitation Centre at Headley Court.

During that time Andy and his family stayed at both of the SSAFA Norton Homes for injured service personnel. He said: “For me taking part in the marathon, albeit only a mile, was a great personal milestone as I have had a huge metal frame on my leg for over a year and haven’t been able to walk unaided in that time.” Phil Packer walked the 26 miles of the marathon in 16 hours, choosing 26 charities to benefit from his ‘26 Challenge’; Mne Andy Grant was his support walker for the 24th mile. Phil said: “I have had the pleasure of supporting

SSAFA for over 17 years. From the day they join and for the rest of their lives, our soldiers, sailors and airmen can depend on SSAFA.”

Argent Princess

THE Princess Royal was presented with a silver WRNS brooch when she attended the WRNS Benevolent Trust’s Annual General meeting in Portsmouth on May 19. The brooch, which was presented to the Princess by the Trust’s

chairman, Cdr Rosie Wilson, was in recognition of the Princess Royal’s 35 years as the charity’s Patron and President. She was appointed Chief Commandant of the WRNS in 1974 and became President of the Trust in the same year. The Princess Royal, who was attending her 19th Annual General Meeting, told the members present at the Royal Naval Museum that there was a surprising age range in those approaching the charity for help – while half were over 80, the number of requests from younger members was increasing. Continued fund-raising was necessary, said the Princess, and all fund-raising efforts, large or small, were welcome. “It is important to emphasize the difference just a little bit of money can make to peoples’ lives, and all of you can make an impact on that,” she said. Help from the WRNS Benevolent Trust, which is formally linked to

the Royal Navy and Royal Marines Charity, can be sought by any former member of the WRNS, serving or retired. In 2009 the Trust gave out more than £311,000 of grants to applicants,

many for help with nursing home or care home fees, but also for requests as diverse as household repairs, funeral expenses, and TV licences.

Morris is no minor for Nuffield Trust

THE origins of the Nuffi eld Trust for the Forces of the Crown go back to 1939 when Colonel the Viscount Nuffi eld donated one million shares in Morris Motors, at that point worth £1.5 million. That portfolio now has a value of £35 million; to the advantage of all three Services which are given an annual cash allocation to

welfare amenities for military personnel.

have been given to the Royal Navy this year: ■ a fitness studio capital grant of £41,000 to RNAS Culdrose; ■ climbing wall major grant of £25,000 to HMS Sultan; ■ major grant of £25,000

to Portsmouth Naval Gliding Centre.

personnel will benefit from the capital grant that will allow the RAF to provide an all-ranks lounge at RAF Wittering. Previous years have seen the provide

Trust sports accommodation at HMS £153,000 for In addition, over 320 Naval Three capital and major grants finance recreational and

Temeraire and £205,000 for the dry ski slope at HMS Neptune. But as well as the big-ticket

items, the Nuffield Trust gives minor grants for projects as diverse as: mess refurbishments, water- recreation equipment, campervans and minibuses, sports equipment, audio visual equipment, music equipment, outdoor recreational equipment and furniture – and perhaps most importantly beer coolers...

applications for any project that benefits Service personnel. Applications to the Trust are channelled through the RN point of contact, and for further information on grants, contact: 3rd Sector Charities Coordinator Navy Command HQ Mail Point 1.3 Leach Building Whale Island Portsmouth PO2 8BY Telephone 023 9262 5238 or




The Trust encourages

ROYAL Marine commando L/Cpl Ram Patten joined 2,000 other runners to complete the Great West Run last month. The green beret has committed to a range of marathons and half-marathons over the course of the year in preparation for the Royal British Legion’s March for Honour event in November. The March for Honour event

will feature four teams – Royal Marines, Royal Navy, Army and RAF – starting from four separate locations and speedmarching via Wootton Bassett to London, raising £1 million for the RBL. Ram has already completed the London Marathon, carrying a loaded bergen, in under six hours.

And barely a week earlier he polished off the Taunton Half Marathon; and two weeks before that the Balf Half Marathon... Not to mention the Tough Ten Challenge...

You can follow Ram directly through Facebook and on Twitter.

Find out more at www.

Scooting back to Blighty

FORMER Killick stoker Alan Abram is hopping on his scooter (a 1968 Lambretta classic, no less) this month to make the long journey from Gibraltar back to the UK in aid of Help for Heroes. Alan’s background in the Royal Navy was the reason behind his choice of the military charity, but it is his passion for riding scooters that made him choose this form of fundraising. Although his scooter is a classic, it does have some drawbacks.

Alan admits: “My Lambretta kicks out about 9bhp – that’s downhill with a following wind and in the slipstream of a milk float.

“So as you can imagine, it’s not the fastest scooter in the world, hence the 100 miles a day target.”

forward to persuading his scooter to tackle some of the rugged mountain ranges of Spain.

If you would like to show your support, visit www.

In the pink

WO1 Dave Halliday RM and POLogs Tracy Bale joined forces in Brighton to complete their fi rst ever marathon in fetching pink outfi ts.

The duo, who work at the Admiralty Interview Board, raised some £1,000 for Breakthrough Breast Cancer.

They crossed the line together in a time of four hours 28 minutes, just inside their target of four and a half hours.

Reservist seafarers

A DINNER to celebrate the formation of the Royal Naval Reserve in 1859 raised £911 for the Mission to Seafarers. The presentation took place at the Mission’s London headquarters, and Revd Canon Ken Peters said: “The donation from the RNR150 dinner was greatly appreciated, and will help us continue our vital work in supporting seafarers in over 230 ports around the world.”

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