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Plymouth Training Squadron

Volume 640: debated on Wednesday 17 May 1961

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asked the Civil Lord of the Admiralty how many junior sea men and artificer apprentices have completed their training in ships of the Plymouth Training Squadron since the inception of the present scheme.

Since the scheme was started twelve months ago, 210 artificer apprentices, 787 junior seamen and 584 junior ratings of other branches have been given sea training in ships of the Plymouth Training Squadron. The apprentices are with the squadron for 15 weeks and the juniors for two weeks.

Would not my hon. Friend agree that the sea-going training provided by Her Majesty's ships "Chaplet" and "Ulysses" has been invaluable in giving junior seamen and apprentices a very large measure of self-assurance and self-reliance so vital to the efficiency of the Navy? Is it the intention to continue this sea-going training even after the ships have been withdrawn from other duties?

I thoroughly endorse the value of sea-going training, especially in the early part of a young man's career, and sometimes during his training period. I am not in a position today to announce what will happen in the future. We are considering it, and we certainly understand the success of the scheme.