Another fine old mess you’ve got me into – Nostalgia

HMS Apollo at the 1977 Fleet Review.
HMS Apollo at the 1977 Fleet Review.
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I recently asked for any memories of the 1977 Silver Jubilee fleet review as next week, over two days, I shall be publishing memories from Captain Gordon Walwyn the organiser of the event.

Former Chief Petty Officer Dennis Wing responded and told me this anecdote.
'I was acting chief bosun’s mate on HMS Apollo at the review. The forward mess, having painted their mess a nice shade of pink, decided to pour the residue down the forward heads [toilets]. The result was a line of pink paint sticking to the boot topping along the waterline from forward to aft the day before the Queen’s inspection.

‘As you can imagine the executive officer was not happy. After a bit of panic we did manage with all hands to paint out the pink in time.’ 

• I also asked if anyone remembered an Italian prisoner-of-war camp at Crookhorn. Den Ward remembers the PoWs wearing their uniforms when he was about 12. He could see the Crookhorn site from his family’s Park Avenue kitchen window. Den suggests the camp was where the golf course is now.