The Second
HMS Manchester Association
Members
The Buzz - The Association's Very Own Newsletter
Click Here to Continue....
31st October 2020

Shipmates!

Welcome to the 19th edition of "The Buzz"!  The 2nd HMS Manchester Association's own annual news and views letter.  If this is the first edition to come your way, we hope it meets with your approval.  If this is in fact the nineteenth edition to come your way, we greatly admire your fortitude and greatly appreciate your continued support!  Please keep it up, and don't give up now, it WILL get better, honest!  The arrival of this Buzz! also marks the point where 2MA moves into it's 20th year. 

Twenty Years?!  Where has the time gone?  We are only four months away from the 10th anniversary of the ships decommissioning and she subsequently departed to the breakers yard 6 years ago, (November 2014) .. and just a thought, where did her metallic remains end up?, hopefully, not as a dustcart in Djibouti, Dnipro or Dohuk, or such like.  As for 2MA's growing longevity, and at the risk of criticism for offering a little self praise, I think we've done rather well to reach this point, I cannot say it has been easy - there have certainly been some challenges along the way, and as it happens we are probably experiencing the biggest one now!

De-Commissioning Day - 24th February 2011

Matty Barnes, Pincher Martin, Pete Berrow,
Connie Francis, Sam Wellens & Keith Woolven

Who could have foreseen all the trials and tribulations we would all be subjected to in 2020?  It has infected and affected all our lives in so many ways, and for a few of our number, tragically too.  We genuinely share your sorrow.  Despite the best efforts of many talented medical people there appears to be no immediate end in sight, and COVID-19 is with us for the foreseeable future and beyond, it will be anyone's guess as to when and if we are able to return to the normal - normal of just twelve months ago.

It is appropriate at this point to recognise those of our Association, and their nearest and dearest who are currently fighting to keep us all safe -



Abbie BARACLOUGH            Martin BROWN                Bill CHURCHLEY
Wendy COOMBS                 Nigel DOWLAND              J J FIALHO
Evelyn HAIGH                     Katie HUNTER        Karen LEMMON
Steve MOFFATT                  Eleanor MORGAN        Alison NORTHERN
Mark 'Robbie' ROBINSON     Julie SALENIUS        Andy THOMPSON   
Steve WILLIAMS                 Bruce 'Slinger' WOODS

As for the Association itself, 2020 has been a simple case of heads down and carry on.  We delayed cancellation of Re-union 19 until HMS NELSON closed its gates to visitors, but with all pubs etc., also closed down, there was little we could do.  The cancellation also impacted on us another way too - we had already started to collect prizes for our Grand Raffle - including those that only certain people can win!  Luckily, we have a spare bedroom!  A great deal of the content of the Buzz is gleaned during the latter stages of the Re-union, and as a consequence we don't have as much material as is the norm.

Abbie BARRACLOUGH
Wendy COOMBS
Evelyn HAIGH
Steve MOFFATT
Mark "Robbie" ROBINSON
Steve WILLIAMS
As for the Association itself, 2020 has been a simple case of heads down and carry on.  We delayed cancellation of Re-union 19 until HMS NELSON closed its gates to visitors, but with all pubs etc., also closed down, there was little we could do.  The cancellation also impacted on us another way too - we had already started to collect prizes for our Grand Raffle - including those that only certain people can win!  Luckily, we have a spare bedroom!  A great deal of the content of the Buzz is gleaned during the latter stages of the Re-union, and as a consequence we don't have as much material as is the norm.

The cancellation was a great disappointment shared by many, and as an alternative, we decided to hold a Virtual Re-union and invited all interested parties to submit a photty of them raising a glass to the "Grand Old Lady" and the Association on June 13th - the
Re-union scheduled date.  We were delighted to receive a considerable number of entries, and a selection appear in this newsletter.  Of course we had an ulterior motive; we were also looking for potential future Re-union venues!!!

However, we took the opportunity during lockdown to change the computer that hosts our website - it was showing its age and we needed to significantly increase its capacity, as a result a considerable number of additional phots now appear, with Ian Poulter's Gulf  88 phots of particular interest, to him if no one else!  Our website continues to generate much interest and by the end of September we had enjoyed 277,816 visits in the first nine months of the year, and it is feasible that we will improve on last year's record breaking total, of 311,746.  Compare that with a total of 72,442 in 2016.  We must be doing something right! 

During the course of the year we have been delighted to welcome two new joiners to our motley band, namely Lance Thomas and Wayne Crowther.  They are our 335th and 336th former ships company member to join.  To say that they volunteered to join 2MA, is stretching the truth a little, press ganged would undoubtedly be more accurate!  Here is what they had to say by way of introduction.

Lance joined Pusser UK Limited in 1983 as a Clankie, and in a six year naval career he only had one sea going ship - The Mighty Manch!  (What a lucky [email protected] I hear you all chorus!)  But that is not all, he was onboard for .... you've guessed it,   .... Global 86!  That's more than flippin (or word to that effect) lucky!

Among his memories of D95 was the fact he came second in the Gib Rock Race - a race he felt he could have won had he not been dressed in steaming boots and ovvies, and carrying a wheel spanner!  He also played football for the ship.  The remainder of his time in the mob was spent on the HMS EXCELLENT guard ship - BRISTOL!  Lance, who was cajoled to join by Steve Moffat, lives in the north of England in a city whose name we are very, very familiar with!

Wayne joined the Pusser as a grown up in 1980, on his way to becoming a PWO.  An accomplished Squash player - well there's not too much to do as a PWO(A), apart from sit in the dark and mumble into a microphone!  In his 30 year naval career he made fleeting visits to BACCHANTE (the famous F69!), ALDERNEY, NEWCASTLE, AURORA, IRON DUCK, SOUTHAMPTON and INVINCIBLE.

Martin BROWN
Nigel DOWLAND
Katie HUNTER
Eleanor MORGAN
Julie SALENIUS
Bruce "Slinger" WOODS
Bill CHURCHLEY
J J FIALHO
Karen LEMMON
Alison NORTHERN
Andy THOMPSON

"Wayne (L) as you may remember him, taking part in the Mike Till Trophy.  That's a wide awake Dave Merrick clutching half a broom stick, with the late Ernie Earnshaw behind.

A proud Yorkshireman, his hobbies include sailing his yacht, following the fortunes of Leeds United, and supporting his local.  Coaxing him into joining 2MA has been a 10 year task!

Wayne's World!

Craft Crowther "Surfina" departs Barcelona in the summer
as the Watch on Deck struggle with the fenders!
(No, we didn't get a call round either!)