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Unique honour for Collingwood man

31 July 2017
Mr David Goddard, Babcock Navigation Staff Officer, HMS Collingwood, has received a special honour following his work in assisting with the navigation issues surrounding the Queen Elizabeth class aircraft carriers’ entry and departure from Portsmouth.

A navigator through and through with 33 years’ service in the Royal Navy (RN) where he navigated several ships and later trained his successors, David is now employed by Babcock International. 

As the lead for the Consort bridge simulator since 2011, David has been heavily involved in the simulator trials conducted to test and confirm the suitability of the new dredged channel and navigation aids for the aircraft carriers.

During these trials over 200 entries and exits have been simulated, in various wind and tidal conditions.

To have these beacons named after you is right and proper; that your hard work has been recognised is brilliant news.

Rear Admiral John Clink RN

It has been widely reported that the QE will be a tight fit for the entrance to the harbour, and in an attempt to address this, David recommended the installation of a number of pairs of transit beacons that would help ensure that the navigation team in the aircraft carriers could visually determine the ships and remain safe. 

These recommendations were accepted by the RN, the Queen’s Harbour Master for Portsmouth and the UK Hydrographic Office.

The beacons can be seen in the northern part of Portsmouth Harbour and near to Spit Sand Fort opposite Southsea Common.

David’s efforts have been recognised both regionally and nationally with the navigational beacons in Portsmouth Harbour being named “Goddard’s Beacons” which will guide the Queen Elizabeth and her sister ship Prince of Wales safely in and out of Portsmouth.

In recognition of this honour, David was presented with a Final Proof Copy of the Portsmouth Harbour Chart to be used by the QE class ships by Flag Officer Sea Training, Rear Admiral John Clink CBE, during the Admiral’s recent visit to the Fareham establishment.

On presenting the Chart the Admiral said “This is very humbling for me as a Specialist Navigator, you have always been admired by everyone you deal with.

“As a professional navigator you know exactly what’s on this chart and what it represents.

“To have these beacons named after you is right and proper; that your hard work has been recognised is brilliant news.”

On receiving his award David said “Thank you to everyone. I understand that the layout of these beacons is unique, this is a huge honour for me to have them named after me.

“I would also like to pay tribute to all the controllers here who were involved with this project.”

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