Sussex Association of Naval Officers (SANO)
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Members please note a change in the Address Box at the end of personal copies of the Newsletter. Our Secretary Ray Wright has been in included and that of the Treasurer has been removed. In order to conserve space Joe Kirk agreed to the replacement. Some of the correspondence directed to me is best handled by Ray and therefore result in a more speedy response! Joe can be contacted via Ray or myself.

The highlight of the SANO year will soon be upon us and that is our Trafalgar Night Dinner to be held on Saturday 28 October 2017. Our Principal Guest this time is Rear Admiral John Kingwell. Admiral Kingwell was our guest at a Lecture/Lunch at Bosham Sailing Club in 2012, following his command of the Mediterranean Task Group at the time of the Libyan crisis. I would further urge members to submit applications to the Secretary promptly in order to avoid disappointment as numbers are limited; latest date for any remaining places is Monday 23 October. The cost is £48 per head and further information may be obtained from the Secretary.



Rear Admiral John Kingwell joined the Royal Navy as a Warfare Officer in 1984. He has had four commands: Sussex University Royal Naval University Unit and its attached patrol vessel HMS PURSUER, the Type 23 frigate HMS ARGYLL and the Assault Ship HMS ALBION. As Commander United Kingdom Task Group (COMUKTG) he commanded the Response Force Task Group off of Libya in 2011. Rear Admiral Kingwell has also served in the Ministry of Defence on four occasions. As a Lt Cdr in Operations, as a Capt as the Military Assistant to both the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff and the 2nd Permanent Under Secretary and twice within the Directorate of Naval Resources and Plans – as an SO1 and most recently as the Head of what became Finance and Military Capability (Navy). On promotion to Rear Admiral in Oct 2013 he became the Director of the Development, Concepts and Doctrine Centre (DCDC). He took up his current appointment as the Deputy Commandant of the Royal College of Defence Studies (RCDS) in May 2016.


        DUNKIRK – A DISAPPOINTING FILM   (Philip Sherwin)

A film about the little ships with many little slips. I would be interested to hear, via letters to the editor, whether other members were disappointed with the much-hyped film, Dunkirk. True, there was not an American in sight and the EU had not been invented, but, for me, it simply failed to reflect the reality of the evacuation. Perhaps my disappointment can best be illustrated by four consecutive scenes. Cut to Kenneth Branagh (clearly intended to portray Captain Tennant) dressed as a Commander about to go on parade at Dartmouth once he had buttoned up his beautiful Gieves greatcoat. He is standing right on the end of the mole, straining to see the ‘Little Ships’ through modern binoculars, with a glassy sunlit sea and sky behind him. Thus, he is clearly looking inland! Cut to 100 yds along the beach where soldiers are struggling to launch a boat into a heavy surf with wind-blown foam flying about, a 1980s French warship and a slightly disguised CMS at anchor in the distance. Cut to our brave Spitfire pilots flying overhead in a cloudless sky with glassy sea below. (I thought only Hurricanes were allowed to deploy cross channel in June 1940 but am happy to be corrected). Finally cut to troops climbing up the destroyer’s side (it has got rough again) to be greeted by female nurses handing out mugs of tea in what looked like an aircraft hangar sized mess deck. I could go on but rest my case on the views inland from the beach; there is no smoke but two large container cranes in the background! One point that Neville might adjudicate upon (was he present?). I don’t think I was aware that an RN destroyer was torpedoed while anchored off Dunkerque If not, then the major ‘shock-horror’ scene of the film is fiction. OH dear, am I a kill-joy? Answers on a postcard to the Editor please.



A goodly turnout of 19 members enjoyed a most pleasant lunch at The Berwick Inn, adjacent to Berwick station in East Sussex, on Thursday 17 August.  An inspiring menu of quality food at reasonable prices combined with good company and conversation to make an excellent outing.  Value for money enjoyed a boost from a village-wide power cut which delayed the food but brought forth a couple of bottles of wine on the house.  Earlier, 4 of our more active members braved a rather muddy in places walk around the nearby Arlington Reservoir*, part of a charming nature reserve run by South East Water; a further 8 walkers had been expected, but rain dampened appetites in this respect.






Ian Wright has provided a link below relating to the arrival of HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH into Portsmouth. The video shows the arrival of the ship with loads of fascinating information about her.



August Question

Q Name the Scottish location and the ultimate location associated with "Operation Charioteer" during WWII.

A. Campbeltown and St.Nazaire.

Question from Ed!

Beyond which latitudes North and South of the Equator are surface ships unable to communicate

Directly with geostationary satellites? (Given: radius of the Earth = 6400km; Distance of satellite from centre of the Earth =42,000km; Assume a spherical Earth). Also, what is the minimum number of geostationary sats required to have complete global cover?



Date Event Guest/Speaker Topic
28 October 2017 Trafalgar Night Dinner RAdm J Kingwell Immortal Memory
18 November 2017 Lecture/Lunch N Hewitt   German Commerce Raiders WW1


‘All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence; then success is sure’ Mark Twain

Best wishes,