CHAIRMANS REPORT DECEMBER 2022

Iain Mackenzie MBE

Iain Mackenzie MBE

National Chairman, Submariners Association

Has Barrie made a mistake? Surely it’s not that time of year again? OH YES IT IS!!

As Chairman I wish you all a Happy Christmas and a warm and prosperous New Year. Unfortunately this year it looks like it will be raising the setting on the thermostat rather than raise a glass!

Now is a good time to remind our members to check up on our veterans to make sure they are not suffering or struggling in silence due to this time of austerity compounded by freezing conditions. We are the silent service. But there is no need to suffer in silence.

On the 7 November the Association lost our Admiral, Patron and Friend, The Lord Boyce KG GCB OBE DL-OS. Mike ‘Crossed The Bar’ after succumbing to cancer -there were a lot of members who didn’t realise his condition, a testament to Mike’s stalwart attitude.

Lord Boyce was not just a figure head for the SA, he worked tirelessly behind the scenes in his position of Admiral of the Fleet to ensure we as submariners – old and new – were recognised. I was very privileged as your Chairman to have been invited by the family to attend his official funeral service on Monday 21st November in his home town of Deal, Kent. There will be a Service of Thanksgiving for the Late Admiral of the Fleet Lord Boyce in Westminster Abbey in the new year. Details will follow.

This is a last call for those wishing to attend the 2023 AGM/Family Weekend on 24th/25th March, in the Holiday Inn Leicester. Details and application forms are available through your branch secretaries and in this News Letter! Remember the 2023 AGM is the first year that Recommendation’s and Proposals will be voted on by MS Forms – One Person One Vote (OPOV).

For those who request it through Branch Secretaries a paper voting form will be available. This should cut down the length of the AGM considerably enabling us to get on with the meeting up with old friends and spinning dits (all true!!).

As Chairman I have been carrying out my promise to visit Branches upon invite. So far I have visited the West of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Sunderland/Northeast/Blyth and Wansbeck (Forum). To my knowledge – through feedback – they were very popular and informative, clearing up some of the myths about the NMC! I am visiting the Exeter/Plymouth Branches on Thursday 19th January, hopefully to again answer questions and forge a closer understanding between the NMC and Branches. If your Branch would like a Chairman’s visit please email a request to sasecretary@submarinefamily.uk. It would be appreciated if a member from that branch could accommodate me for the night to save the association hotel costs. I am fully house trained!

The SA has made one major improvement to ensure the future of the association. Joining The Submarine Family (TSF). In order for the Royal Navy Royal Marines Charity (RNRMC) and TSF to support National Operating Costs and branch applications for grants we must prove our support, that means you as a individual member of the SA joining TSF and make a voluntary donation within your means if possible. A good analogy of this was pointed out to me by Graeme McCabe (NMC) “If you don’t put money into the bank, you can’t expect to draw money out”. I rest my case M’Lud.

If you as a member have any ideas on how we can improve the Association, encourage younger people to join – yet not forget our senior veterans who formed the association and are still the backbone – please pass them on to your Branch secretaries.

Ladies and Gentlemen from all on the NMC we wish you a happy Christmas and a warm New Year.

Iain

Iain Mackenzie
Chairman