I joined HMS Turbulent from HMS Raleigh as the Chief Stoker in February 2005. As I was going to be employed in the Forward part of the boat, my qualifications were to be different. I still was required to re-qualify as a submariner (BSQ) and also to qualify as a watchkeeper on the Systems Control Console (SCC). Turbulent was undergoing maintenance when I joined, so I was again loaned to a similar submarine to get qualified.


I subsequently joined HMS Trafalgar by boat transfer for about 10 days. It only took me 3 days to re-qualify BSQ and another day before I sat a written SCC exam. The rest of the trip was largely uneventful as we headed for Bermuda.

Following a very enjoyable few days exploring Bermuda on a scooter, I flew home to re-join Turbulent.


On my return, it was all hands to the pump as Turbulent prepared to rejoin the fleet following an extended maintenance period. Hitting the ground running, I was pulled in many directions as I prepared to conduct separate inspections on our fire fighting and escape equipment.

We were eventually ready for Basic Operational Sea Training (BOST) as the submarine was put through itís paces. All aspects of our fire fighting, damage control tactical organisation and administration were stretched to their limits, culminating in a final inspection that proved to Flag Officer Sea Training that the submarine and itís crew were in all respects ready for operational deployment.


We interrupted BOST to take part in the International Fleet Review to mark the 200 year anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar. This was a truly spectacular event that saw, most of the fleet and many ships and submarines from foreign navies gathered in the Solent.

Unfortunately, there was no shore leave, but we were allowed onto the casing, as we swung at anchor, to enjoy the evening son et luminere (fireworks display).


Following the festivities, we sailed back to Plymouth to continue with BOST and finally passed the Inspection that saw Turbulent ready for operational deployment. We already knew where we were going, back on patrol to our usual patrol areas.


We eventually sailed for patrol in October 2005 returning on time just before Christmas.

I came home to the news, that my wife had suffered a breakdown, so with much regret, I was forced to leave the submarine service and to return to General Service.


I finally left HMS Turbulent in April 06 to join HMS Raleigh Fire School.


Trafalgar Class

Primary Role

Hunter Killer

Pennant No



5208 tons Dived , 4740 tons Surfaced


280 ft


32 ft




Pressurised Water Reactor providing heat to generate steam driving two steam turbines into a duel tandem, single helical double reduction gearbox with a single output shaft and propulsor


5 torpedo tubes capable of firing: Mk 24 Spearfish Torpedoes, RN Sub Harpoon Missiles (RNSH)† and later on Tomahawk Missiles (TLAM)