Royal Navy and Maritime Book Reviews PROVIDED BY - Rob Jerrard

HMS VERNON (Diving School)Was Portsmouth Hampshire.

Photograph taken at Stokes Bay, 1960

"We shall see,while above us, The waves roar and whirl, A ceiling of Amber, A pavement of pearl." Matthew Arnold, The Forsaken Merman


HMS Vernon was the Anti-Submarine Training Establishment at Portsmouth. When I first went there it was because the Diving Training was attached. We were on "Deepwater" at first, an old German ship. We then moved ashore into Vernon. Much of our training was at Horsea Island near Whale Island.

HMS Deepwater On Service with RN

The initial course was Shallow Water Diver using Oxygen re-breathing sets. I then qualified as a Free Diver on one of the first courses, we used SABA sets. I stayed on at the School and assisted to train other divers. During this time I became an Able Seaman. I qualified diver as an OD (Ordinary Seaman.

If you were on Free Diver 12 Course, June 1960 I took some photos at Stokes Bay & at No-Man's-Land Fort Spithead. Yeoman of Signals Atkinson, Soapy Watson, (Nick PO Diver 1 Instructor), & Ken Dyck a Canadian Submariner. I was 2nd Dickie on the course.


Books you may find of interest


"The Frogmen" 1950

"Above Us The Waves (1955)"
"Cockleshell Heroes"
"ordeal By Water"