Former Chief Petty Officer given honour at new naval branch

Admiral Sir Desmond Cassidi is presented with a giant Valentines card, by wren Yvonne McClure

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AN MP has awarded a former Chief Petty Officer the position of honorary secretary of a navy association.

Gosport MP Caroline Dinenage gave Neville Saunders, a member of the Lee-on-the-Solent and Stubbington Royal Navy Association, the title at a branch meeting on Thursday evening.

Mr Saunders is the first person in the branch to be awarded the title.

He joined the Royal Navy in 1955, serving on HMS Russell, Orion, Albion and Ark Royal, with a career spanning 27 years.

He finished as CPO Saunders in 1978, going on to join the RNA in 1982 and becoming standard bearer for the Hemel Hempstead branch for 25 years and its chairman for 10 years.

It was only last year that the former sailor established the branch at Lee-on-the-Solent and Stubbington.

Ms Dinenage said it was a fitting tribute to his service in the Royal Navy and work in the RNA.

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