THE ROYAL NAVAL
ASSOCIATION
Incorporated by Royal Charter
Patron: Her Majesty The Queen
Registered Charity No: 1068408
LISKEARD BRANCH
Commissioned 20th April 1986
Full Recognition by The Royal Navy
The Bilge Rat
July 2021
Issue No 385
2
COMMITTEE MEMBERS 2021/22
Any items for inclusion in the Bilge Rat are to be
sent to: - editor@liskeard-rna.org.uk
Branch website www.liskeard-rna.org.uk
Blog https://liskeard-rna.blogspot.com/
President
Chairman
Vice Chairman
Secretary
Treasurer
Membership Sec
Welfare Officer
Welfare Officer
Area Delegate
Social Secretary
Standard Bearer
Slops Bosun
Rum Bosun
Fundraiser
Auditor(1)
Auditor(2)
Auditor(3)
PR Officer
Branch Chaplain
Bilge Rat Editor
Committee
S/M Marie Belfitt
S/M Roger Grace
S/M Christina Whitty
S/M Warwick Belfitt
S/M Christina Whitty
S/M Maureen Parker
S/M Terry Whitty
S/M Jerry Fleming
S/M Jerry Fleming
S/M Warwick Belfitt
S/M Adam Strutt
REQUIRED
S/M Stephen McGuire
S/M Adam Strutt
S/M Ian Wheatley
S/M Adam Strutt
S/M Jerry Fleming
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3
DISCLAIMER
Whilst The Bilge Rat is the magazine of the Liskeard branch of
the Royal Naval Association, it should be clearly understood
that the contents do not necessarily reflect the views of the
Association, the branch members or the Editor and should not
therefore be interpreted as such.
A colour version of the Bilge Rat may be viewed on the RNA
website.
Branch website: www.liskeard-rna.org.uk
COMMITTEE MEMBERS 21/22 2
HAPPY BIRTHDAY 4
LT CDR JOHN LENNON (RTD) 5
JOHN LENNON - NAVAL CAREER 6
AWARD AND PRESENTATION OF HONORARY
BURGESS
7
IMAGES OF JOHN 8
TRIBUTES TO JOHN 10
HRH PRINCE WILLIAM IN FASLANE 12
PUZZLE PAGE 13
ADVERTS 14
SOCIAL CALENDAR 2021
15
Contents
4
HAPPY BIRTHDAY
Birthdays for August 2021
Members (Approx)
Total 53
Life 6,
Full 27,
Associates 20,
1st Sandy Palmer
8th Wilf Jolley
25th Susan Shand
5
Lt Cdr John Lennon
It is with very great sadness that we have to report that, our
Branch President, John Lennon crossed the bar on the
afternoon of Thursday 22nd July 2021.
Following a very successful Naval career, John joined the
Liskeard branch of the Royal Naval Association on the 29th
March 1988, when the branch was still in its infancy.
John was recruited as President for the Branch by his post-
man, Joe Dunne. At his passing, he was the current
President, Social Secretary and the Public Relations Officer.
John was awarded a Life membership for his services to the
Branch.
His humour and willingness to help will be greatly missed.
6
John Lennon - Naval Career
John joined HMS Ganges 17/3/59, and served for approximately 40
years, before leaving as a Lieutenant Commander.
He initially joined as a Radio Operator before passing his Admiralty
Interview Board to become an Officer.
Unfortunately I know very little and have been unable to find anything
about his career prior to becoming an officer.
I have been informed of one piece of information;
One of his drafts was to the Comcen in Whitehall, and it was during
that time that he met his wife of many years, Jean.
Commissioned
1973 HMS TIGER Cruiser 9550 tons
1975 HMS ANDROMEDA Leander Class Frigate 2650 tons
1977 HMS DRAKE, Devonport
1979 HMS HERMIONE Leander Class Frigate 2650 tons
1981 Flag Officer Sea Training, (NCHQ, Leach Building, Whale
Island)
1982 Serving in a NATO (North Atlantic Treaty Organisation) Ap-
pointment
1983 North Atlantic Treaty Organisation
1984 Ministry of Defence CNSO
1986 Ministry of Defence, London
1988 Flag Officer, Plymouth
1997 Ministry of Defence, London
7
AWARD AND PRESENTATION OF HONORARY BURGESS
The Mayor said that the Council had a system of reward for people
who had done outstanding work for the Town and awarded them
Honorary Burgess status, the last award had been made in 2007 and
he was pleased to announce that an award was to be made now.
The Town Council had discussed this matter and had made its first
unanimous decision of the year, that an award should be made this
year. The second unanimous decision had been to agree the recipient
of the award. This person had a career in the Royal Navy and had lived
in Liskeard since 1977. Without him the Town Forum would not exist,
the Liskerrett Centre would not be the success it was and Christmas
would not be the same, therefore the Town would not be the same.
The Mayor was honoured to present the Honoured Burgess award to
John Lennon. John Lennon accepted the award. He said that all his life
he had been told, first by his mother, then when he joined the navy,
then when commissioned that he would soon be one of these, but he
had never known what one of these was. His service history was an
active one, he had not been a desk bound sailor, he had been in
Borneo and had his life saved by a Gurkha, he had not accepted any
medals, this was the first he had accepted.
He had moved to Liskeard to be within travelling distance of the
Dockyard so that he could easily join his ship, and had raised his family
here. When he left the Navy and his family had grown up and flown the
nest, he had realised what Liskeard meant to him, it had been a lovely
place to live, so he had not moved away. It was an active Town with
good schools and many active clubs which he had enjoyed. He
believed that the work he did was for himself, he did not want any
reward, but he had great honour in accepting to be an Honoured
Burgess of the Town he believed in.
Thank you.
Taken from the Liskeard Town Council Minutes 20th May 2015
8
Images of John
9
10
Tributes to John
Two days ago , we lost John Lennon who passed the bar following a
recent stroke. He was President and PRO of the RNA Liskeard Branch
and worked tirelessly for it and for Liskeard as a whole. He worked for
the Liskerrett Centre and organised Liskeard Lights Up (an annual
event) for many years. A softly spoken Scott, married to Jean and a
great credit to the Royal Navy and to Liskeard. He will be sadly missed
by all of us who knew him. RIP John.
S/M Lynne Fleming
John Lennon
These are some of my memories of John. I have known John for some
20 years, he was a kind, gentle funny man, always there to help you
whenever you needed it.
Warwick and I became great friends with John and Jean, going out to
different functions, shows and meals. Also, the four of us had some
great holidays together which provided many fond memories.
No doubt that over the coming months we will all recount our own
memories of John in his various roles, and he will be the subject of
many ditsfor years to come.
He will be sadly missed by everyone that knew him and our thoughts
are with Jean and his family, David and Louise and the Grandchildren.
S/M Marie Belfitt.
Chair
I am extremely saddened to hear that John Lennon a true Liskeard
stalwart has passed away.
John was one of our honoured burgesses and has devoted himself to
the service of our community for many years having already served
his country in the Royal Navy.
Rest in Peace Sir it truly was an honour to know you!
Cllr Simon Cassidy—Mayor of Liskeard
11
Message from the Secretary
It is with great sadness that I have to inform you of the passing of our
RNA Branch President, Shipmate John Lennon who passed away on
Thursday afternoon.
John joined Liskeard branch on 29/3/1988 and he did so much for the
branch over the 33 years he was a member. John was a Town
Burgess and a member of several organisations and worked
extremely hard for the benefit of the residents of the town.
He will be greatly missed by a huge number of people
A lot of people are putting posts on different sites about him. Please
read them.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Jean and family at this very difficult
time.
As soon as I get some more information I will pass it on to everyone.
S/M Christina Whitty
As the word is beginning to spread I feel a post is now suitable.
Yesterday we received the sad news that John Lennon had passed
away. John was a very active member of both the Legion and the
RNA. He was the current President of Liskeard RNA, having served
his country in the Navy, Honoured Burgess of Liskeard, Rotarian,
driving force behind Liskeard Lights Up, Liskerrett Centre organiser, to
name just a few of the local organisations that have benefitted from
his time, knowledge and support. Our thoughts are very much with his
beloved wife Jean, his children and family and friends. Thank you
John for all you have done on behalf of us all at the Legion. Rest in
peace.
S/M Sara Treeby
12
HRH Prince William in Faslane
His Royal Highness Prince William visited the home of the UK Subma-
rine Service in Argyll and Bute today to meet with service personnel
and officially open a multi-million-pound training facility.
The Prince, who is Commodore
-in-Chief Submarines, spent the
afternoon at HM Naval Base
Clyde, Scotlands largest mili-
tary establishment, beginning
with an update on operations
delivered by members of the
Submarine Flotilla.
While at the site His Royal
Highness officially opened the
new £34m Submarine Escape,
Rescue, Abandonment and
Survival (SMERAS) facility.
Known as Thetisbuilding, af-
ter wartime submarine HMS
Thetis which sank in Liverpool Bay in 1939, the facility is used to train Royal Navy
submariners in how to safely escape from a stricken submarine.
The full story can be read at the following link;
https://www.royalnavy.mod.uk/news-and-
latest-activity/news/2021/june/29/210629-
new-submarine-training-facility?
13
Puzzle Page
Last Months(232):
ACROSS, 1. Howdah, 4. Shapes, 9. Seducer, 10. Bronx, 11. Anna, 12. Enquire, 14. King Solomon,
18. Gorilla, 19. Abet, 22. Exact, 24. Leisure, 25. System, 26. Intent. DOWN: 1. Hiss, 2. Widen,
3. Archangel, 5. Hub, 6. Proviso, 7. Sextet, 8. Irrevocable, 11. Ask, 13. Quotation, 15. Inroads, 16. Nut,
17. Egress, 20. Elude, 21. Feat, 23. The.
ACROSS
1. Unruly mob (6)
5. New York "Tube" (6)
8. Summit (3)
9. Chinese labourer (6)
10. Excused (6)
11. Trick (4)
12. Story teller (8)
14. Foolish (13)
17. Went up (8)
19. Countertenor (4)
21. Journey (6)
23. Move in (6)
24. Viral infection (3)
25. Celestial body (6)
26. Ditch (6)
DOWN
2. Circular coral reef (5)
3. Grouse (9)
4. Everlasting (7)
5. Lance (5)
6. Farewell (3)
7. Authorise (7)
13. Mountain slide (9)
15. Nasal opening (7)
16. Outlaws den (7)
18. Blue Dutch earthenware (5)
20. Subject (5)
22. Light truck (3)
1 2
3
4 5 6 7
8
9
10
11
12 13
14 15
16
17
18
19
20
21
22
23
24
25 26
14
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15
Social Calendar 2021
22nd Oct
30th Oct
7th November
11th November
14th November
11th December
18th December
Trafalgar Night
Festival of Remembrance
Dedication of Field of Remembrance
2 minutes silence on Parade 1100.
Remembrance parade
OAPs dinner
Christmas Dinner (Pensilva)
All social dates subject to current Covid-19 restrictions.
Updates as situation changes.
JOURNAL OF THE FEDERATION OF PLYMOUTH AND DISTRICT
EX SERVICES ASSOCATIONS
If anybody would like to read more on events outside of the Liskeard
area, current and previous issues can be found at the link below.
www.fedexservicesassoc.co.uk
We have booked the Hannafore Hotel for the weekend of 22nd
October for Trafalgar Night. Captain Suzi Nielsen MBE (HMS Raleigh)
as Guest of Honour.
16
Liskeard RNA usually meets on the last Thursday of the month, in
the room above the Royal British Legion. The room and bar are open
from 1930 and the meeting starts at 2000. You do not have to be ex
Royal Navy to join. All are welcome.
Anybody who has content for the Bilge Rat, please send to
the Bilge Rat Hon Editor.
Email: - editor@liskeard-rna.org.uk
Breakfast Club· Market Cafe Liskeard
Next Meeting
0930 14th Aug 2021