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MBE awarded to Warrant Officer celebrating 37 years in the Naval Service

22 March 2017
Lynne Joyce wanted to join the Royal Navy since she was a child – and those instincts proved spot on.

For Lynne has now notched up 37 years’ service, and is still playing a crucial role in her chosen field – as well as gaining formal recognition in the shape of an MBE.

WO1 Joyce grew up in the West Midlands, attending Walhouse Primary School and Cannock Grammar School.

Her mother, Betty Morgan still lives nearby in Cannock and Lynne visits her former hometown regularly.

WO Joyce has given the Royal Navy 37 years’ worth of support through stores departments.

Lt Cdr Sam Imrie

Lynne joined the Women’s Royal Naval Service (WRNS) straight from school at the age of 17. 

She was a Queen’s Guide, and had always wanted to serve in the WRNS, though with no family naval connections she cannot remember quite why the Senior Service held such a fascination for her.

She joined the Supply branch, preferring to become a stores accountant than a writer as it meant she would meet more people in the course of her working day – and she has never looked back since.

Lynne joined the WRNS at HMS Dauntless and completed her training at Chatham (HMS Pembroke) and HMS Collingwood.

She then served at a number of shore establishments, including RNAS Culdrose (near Helston, in Cornwall), HMS Raleigh (near Plymouth), Faslane (west of Glasgow), HMS Drake (Plymouth) and Portsmouth.

She also had a couple of spells in Italy – a welcome posting as she just missed out on Hong Kong in an earlier draft.

“I really enjoyed that – and I got my Italian GCSE out of it as well,” said Lynne.

She also appreciated the opportunities for adventurous training that the Navy provided. “Not long after I joined HMS Collingwood I went skiing in Scotland, and I thought this is going to be all right,” she said.

“Later, when I went to Culdrose, I went on ten days’ Adventurous Training to Algonquin Provincial Park in Canada.

“We went across lakes in open canoes, carrying the canoes between the lakes – it is one of those things you do not get to do very often…”

Lynne is proud to have taken part in two November Remembrance ceremonies in Whitehall.

“Because I was tall, the first time I was at the back as a junior rating, and I said to myself one day I want to be the senior rating at the front. About ten years later, I managed it.”

Lynne currently works in a tri-Service facility at Bicester, and it is this work that saw her awarded an MBE.

As logistics information systems are upgraded and replaced, there is a need for experienced people to help bed in new systems and ways of working, and to help people learn new processes.

Lynne was presented with her MBE at Buckingham Palace last November, when her mum took her place alongside guests including Judi Dench – the actor was there supporting another medal recipient.

Lynne’s boss, Lt Cdr Sam Imrie, said: “WO Joyce has given the Royal Navy 37 years’ worth of support through stores departments.

“But for the past 12 to 15 years in practice she has been heavily involved in logistics information systems and bringing them into service.

“WO Joyce is instrumental in making sure that as system are brought in there is no loss of capability as people get used to it. She has helped to hold it all together.”

Lynne added: “As young Wrens in 1979 we were told we were there to support the ships and units on the front line.

“That mantra has been maintained all through my Naval career, and although the badges are no longer blue [the WRNS was fully integrated into the Royal Navy in 1993], it is the WRNS ethos that has helped me do my job to the best of my ability.”

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