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Outstanding efforts of ‘Fly Navy’ personnel recognised

10 November 2017
The top achieving personnel in the world of ‘Naval Aviation’ have been recognised at the Fleet Air Arm’s first ever ‘Annual Awards’ event.

Sixteen men and women from across the Fleet Air Arm (the Royal Navy’s Flying Force), were invited to the Houses of Parliament for the Arm’s first ever Navy Wings ‘Live your Life’ Awards Dinner.

All of the individuals attending have been recognised for their contribution to the Fleet Air Arm during the past year. Some operate on the front line and others behind the scenes, but they all have one thing in common; they are worthy of recognition as the Head of the Fleet Air Arm was keen to point out.

Rear Admiral Keith Blount (OBE) said: "This is my opportunity to gather and thank those that have received awards for their extraordinary hard work or talented flying skill over the last 12 months in support of the Fleet Air Arm and the nation.

"I am extremely proud of them all and I hope that by inviting them to meet Members of Parliament and visit the most important ‘House’ in the country, they realise just how much they are valued.

"Our people are so very important to us; it is them that make the Fleet Air Arm the outstanding fighting arm that it is.” 

This is my opportunity to gather and thank those that have received awards for their extraordinary hard work or talented flying skill over the last 12 months in support of the Fleet Air Arm and the nation.

Rear Admiral Keith Blount OBE

Award recipients included a Royal Navy pilot serving in America to gain fast jet experience, others who have contributed to flight safety and the design of the new aircraft carrier, and those who train others for frontline operations.

Engineers and Survival Equipment experts were also present, as were those who are responsible for leading physical training and adventurous training expeditions.

During the evening, a special award was presented to recognise the ‘Fleet Air Arm Sailor of the Year’.

This award, a Bremont watch, was given to Petty Officer Matthew ‘Willow’ Williams for his efforts to improve safety on the Royal Navy’s Adversary Squadron, 736 NAS based at RNAS Culdrose.

The watch was kindly donated and presented by Mr Giles English, one of the founding brothers of the Bremont Watch Company.

PO Williams, who ensures that fast jet pilots have the right safety and survival equipment to enable them to fly, said: “There were a lot of people nominated who have done an excellent job this year, so to be selected from the group was amazing.

"The evening was something that I will never forget and I hope that it inspires others to work towards this award next year. It is really nice to receive the award and be recognised for the hard work that my team does.

"I really enjoy working with the Royal Navy Fixed Wing Force and hope to one day work with those flying the new F-35B jets."

The event was only made possible with the support of Keith Knowles (OBE), Founder of ‘Beds and Bars’, the Navy Wings Charity and Members of Parliament.

Rear Admiral Blount said: “I am very grateful to Andrew Griffiths MP for hosting us so splendidly in the fabulous setting of the Houses of Parliament.  I am also thankful to the continued support of Mr Keith Knowles, the CEO of Beds and Bars, for enabling this event.

"The ‘Live Your Life’ campaign is having a direct impact on our personnel, and it is fantastic to see industry supporting the Armed Forces.

"I also wish to thank Navy Wings for their tremendous work to ‘inspire and remember’ the Fleet Air Arm’s proud heritage and of course the Bremont Watch Company for the fantastic prize given to our very deserving ‘Sailor of the Year’.”

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