In Which I Served.

In Which I Served
Posted on Dec 18th 2018
by irishroverpei

There is something odd about a submarine on which I once served, becoming a museum! It tends to make one think of oneself as old!!!. What???no not me. Seriously if you get a chance to visit the Portsmouth area the submarine Alliance is a must, a worth while tour of this grand old boat will be hugely enjoyable. In the colour photo of the children laying on the main passageway bunks there should be a sign, Ben slept here!!! The middle bunk was mine but alas I had no teddy bear to share it with.
Alliance is clearly not in commission and so officially I should not use the ‘HMS’ prefix. But she looks brand new and ready for sea. She is even flying a Jack and Ensign (in contravention of the rules). But we do this with pride and respect. It looks appropriate and our visitors like it too and that is good enough reason.
The submarine has been dressed internally to represent the style of the decades in which she was in commission (40s, 50s, 60s and 70s). A ‘soundscape’ provides a background of authentic crew and other noises, to make the submarine feel lived in. This, together with the illumination of the instrumentation gives the convincing impression that the boat is ‘alive’. We will need to keep her in good condition for the future. The average annual cost of maintenance is estimated at about £45k; fundraising to pay for this will continue, but I am pleased to say that all refurbishment costs have been met. The Project team did an excellent job.
The work on internal refurbishment completed at the end of February. During March we conducted pre-launch tours for teachers, tourism professionals, disability groups and so on to test out all the facilities. We held the Public Opening on 3 April (a celebration of the Museum and Alliance in Gosport) and the Royal Re-dedication in the presence of HRH The Duke of Cambridge on 12 May. Following his tour of Alliance, HRH was awarded a submarine badge and celebrated this with a tot of rum in full view of all of the guests
Bravo Zulu to the Submarine Museum Staff and Volunteers.
God Bless and keep reading.

About irishroverpei

Author of "Lily & Me", "The Royal Navy & Me" and Chapter XXl Armageddon. Writer, blogger and RN Submariner, antique automobile enthusiast.
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