On my 16th birthday I flew to New York to join my first ship the 'Queen of Bermuda. The photo is at All Boys Point' Bermuda.




All that went before 


I am a young 62 yr old, what I mean is that right up to when I had my stroke I led an active life style. I have worked without a break a since I was 13yrs old, doing paper rounds and golf caddying. At the age of 15 I left school and started full time employment a week later. I flew to New Yorkon my 16Th birthday to join my fist ship, 17yrs later after joining several ships and seeing most of the world I decided to come ashore to be with my family. 

During my time in the navy I fell in love and married a beautiful young lady called Jeannie, 53yrs later we are still together and still in madly in love, we have four lovely children, my oldest daughterLilalives near Basingstoke my son John who is in the Royal Navy, wife and child live in Norwich,Louise, husband and 2 children live just outside Norwich. My youngest (Sarah) lives inAustraliawith her husband and four children, they all played a vital part in my survival especially during the first few months of my stroke. 

In 1982 I became a Christian, Jeannie was saved first then me, and in 1984 after a failed attempt of starting my own business I started work for YMCA Norfolk it was here that my life became very active i.e. I was introduced to hill walking and adventure caving by my old friend and colleague Cliff, we had some serious fun together and ended up taking groups of young men from the YMCA to Derbyshire or the Lakes and I fell in love with outdoor activities. I remember one time while caving in Bagshaw cavern Derbyshire I got stuck in what they called the letter box, Cliff and the others took the mickey then the guide told me that they would come back in a week when I would have lost enough weight to get out, this statement had me moving but my cloths were torn getting out. 

Eventually I qualified with the Mountain Leadership Booard summer and took up wild country camping group work and solo, Mountaineering, canoe instructing, skiing, (not very good at skiing but enjoyed the après bit) hill walking in winter, I love snow and ice, until recently I had a caravan in Edale and spent many winter weekends walking Kinder Scout etc. Only last year 2011 I spent New Years day in the snow on Kinder Scout one month before my stroke. I will refer to my outdoor pursuits as I go along as my memories were part of my survival. 

Christmas 2010 both Jeannie and I visited my son and family in Gibraltar where he was stationed at the time, I ended up in bed all Christmas with swine flu, three weeks later we went to Australia for two weeks. Australia at that time of the year is sweltering but I enjoyed it. We did all sorts of things like feeding sting rays, they would swim around your feet while you fed them, I have never experienced any thing like it, we had meals out and plenty of Bar B Qs.

I had no idea of what was to take place.

My first ship Queen of Bermuda I joined in New York on my 16th Birthday 1966 as a Bell Boy
I wore a uniform like this
Here I am serving afternoon teas
The Windsor Castle Southampton to South Africa
Queen Elizabeth, Southampton to New York
Trinity House vessel 'Mermaid' THV Mermaid
THV Mermaid in the background

MV Glanelly which was a tramp steamer, I sailed Boxing Day 1967 and was away from Jeannie 9 months sailing around the world, We crossed the date line and had two Fridays my first and last time i circumnavigate around the world.

Sir David 2
Carrying Coal from Sunderland to Becton Power Station on the Themes.
Skiing in Austria
Endeavor Challenge 1996

50 mile challenge on the Shropshire Union and Stafforshire-Worsestor Canals
Stannage Edge Derbyshire 1999

Eddie and Sally climbing
Adventure caving November 1996

Marie, Jeremy and myself outside the cave called Suicide at the bottom of Whinnet Pass Derby-shire
Alan Crag Lake District 1995

Just me
At the foot of Skiddow Lake District 1995, that's me on the right

Me on the right

Extremely cold, we camped out but only managed one night before I made the decision to abandon the campsite and make for safety.
Winter training Scotland
More extreme climbing, this time in Scotland, Aonach Beag
Summiting, but I cant remember which one
My own Hillary Step, it was very scary with avelanche warnings out.
French Alps 2008

Alfred Jones 16.08.2015 19:03

I also sailed on queen 1960-63 as 3rd Butcher also played for the football team i remember names of Tommy Martin and Jimmy Corrish and Tony Baldwin

brian broome 26.03.2013 18:53

Did you know Eddie Pleeblan from Seam Harbour,Get in touch with Peter Manley I seam to recognise you???? peter organised the reunion 150 turned up 26.03.2013 18:38

Hi,I also sailed on the Queen of Bermuda 1964to66 ended up being a marine inspector looking after dry dockings we had a reunion in Bermuda last year

Lila 05.09.2012 13:16

I am surprised mum hasn't commented on your picture pops - its her favourite one of you

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Latest comments

29.01 | 10:30

Very inspiring

27.01 | 07:33

I can see a rapid improvement as I scroll through these Eddie.
Well done you

09.09 | 04:40

Thanks for the post, great tips and information which is useful for all.

16.08 | 05:19

Nice article.Really you write wonderful stuff. Your post looks great. Thanks for sharing!