Clickety click! We’re knitting a cover to keep Alliance warm

L-R Karen Seale, Toni Young, Mary Churchley, Maggie Gavin, Enid Fletcher inside HMS Alliance in Gosport knitting''''Picture: Paul Jacobs (132123-1)
L-R Karen Seale, Toni Young, Mary Churchley, Maggie Gavin, Enid Fletcher inside HMS Alliance in Gosport knitting''''Picture: Paul Jacobs (132123-1)
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THE submarine is one of a kind, has had a £7m makeover and has been under wraps for months.

Now the museum which houses HMS Alliance has come up with a scheme for her to avoid catching a chill this winter – by creating her a giant hand-knitted scarf.

Groups from all over Gosport have been busy clicking their knitting needles to create squares, which will be knitted together to make a large scarf to be draped around the submarine’s conning tower.

The scheme has been hatched by the Royal Navy Submarine Museum to boost community engagement.

Gareth Brettell, education officer at the museum, said: ‘The Alliance project is to restore her back to her former glory over a period of three years.

‘That project also has a community side so we are going out to groups and asking them to do a knitting project and get them to do their own little tribute to the submariners who served on her.

‘It’s a great way to link up with the community.’

Members of Gosport’s Brendoncare group, which meets at The Anchorage, Willis Road, paid a visit to the museum so they could check out the scale to which they are working.

Karen Seale, who runs the group for over-55s, said: ‘It’s something silly but why not get together and have some fun?

‘We have got a lot of ladies who like to knit so we decided to put it out to everyone so that others can some along and knit and natter and meet some new friends.’

Toni Young, from the Gosport group, said: ‘I go to the clubs but over the summer they close for a few weeks, so it’s good to have the chance to knit and natter throughout August, it’s therapeutic.’

Brendoncare is running groups every Monday throughout August.

Toni said that the knitted squares have to be 12x12 inches, be knitted with size eight needles and with double-knitting wool.

Enid Fletcher, also from the Gosport group, said: ‘It’s novel, we’ve been knitting jumpers for children in Zimbabwe but this is nice because it’s so different.’

The museum hopes to have over 150 squares ready by the end of November, so they can be sewn together before an unveiling before Christmas.

Gareth added: ‘It’s like a Christmas present, we thought we would hold a concert to say thank you.’

To join in at Brendoncare’s over-55s club call 07757 264254. The group is looking for wool donations.

If you have a group who would like to contribute by knitting call the museum on (023) 9254 5033.