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Market Deeping teenager aims to be third generation submariner

12 March 2018
A 19-year-old from Market Deeping is one step closer to achieving his aim of becoming the third generation of his family to serve as a Royal Navy submariner.

Recruit Connor Barnes arrived at the gates of HMS Raleigh to begin his training in November, following in the footsteps of his grandfather, Desmond Barnes, father, Mark and uncle, Neil Ranson.

Connor said:  “My dad served on the old diesel class submarines and my grandad was based out in Singapore so I’ve grown up listening to the amazing times they’ve had.”

The teenager was among the latest group of trainees who marked the successful completion of their 10-week initial naval training course on parade at the Royal Navy training establishment in Cornwall.  The course is designed to teach the recruits the skills they’ll rely upon throughout their Service careers.

Connor said:  “I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the training, it’s been great.

"I’ve made loads of new friends.

"I can see a change in myself, I definitely feel that I am in the military.

"Everything I do is more direct, I don’t waste time as I used to.”

My dad served on the old diesel class submarines and my grandad was based out in Singapore so I’ve grown up listening to the amazing times they’ve had.

Recruit Connor Barnes

Mark Barnes, Connor’s father, served with his uncle, Neil, on board a submarine in the 1980s.  Neil introduced Mark to his sister who later became Mark’s wife and Connor’s mum.   Desmond Barnes reached the rank of Petty Officer (Electrician).

Connor said:  “My family love the fact that I’m in the Royal Navy. They always said they’d be proud of me whatever I do, but there were a few tears shed at my passing-out-parade.

"It was a proud day, especially because it’s in the blood now and they’re proud to see me doing something that I love, that they loved too.”

Connor has joined the Royal Navy under the Nuclear Undergraduate Apprentice Scheme. The scheme offers a fully-funded engineering degree on a tailored career and promotion to Petty Officer within four years.

With the first phase of his training complete Connor must learn how to operate beneath the waves and will move to HMS Drake in Plymouth to begin his submarine qualification training.

Connor said:  “I want to get to sea as soon as possible. I’d like to get my degree, become a senior rating and then I’d like to commission as an Officer and go to Britannia Royal Naval College.”

Details of career opportunities within the Royal Navy are available online at www.royalnavy.mod.uk or by calling the Recruitment Line on 03456 00 53 02.

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