SAILORS at HMS Sultan have been dressing up as pirates to host a free children’s party for more than 2,000 disabled and disadvantaged children.
The children’s party, which has been run by HMS Sultan for 10 years, gave the children an exclusive preview of the HMS Sultan Summer Show, which takes place today and tomorrow.
Kim Cammidge, 37, brought along her six-year-old son Scott who goes to Rachael Maddocks School in Waterlooville.
She said: ‘We got tickets through his school. It’s fantastic. We came last year.
‘It’s absolutely brilliant. I have got nine children altogether so we don’t really get to go to places like this because it’s quite expensive.
‘They have been really excited. They have been going on about it all day.’
Christine French, 44, from Forest Way in Gosport brought her four children along.
She said: ‘It’s a chance to get the children out where they aren’t going to be judged for being different.
‘This is our first year. It’s brilliant. They have got loads here for them. It’s such a relaxed atmosphere.’
Justine Rustell, 33, from Seymour Road in Lee-on-the-Solent, took her five-year-old son Lennon Keefe.
She added: ‘We just wanted to join in with the fun. It’s his birthday on Monday so we wanted to have some pre-birthday fun.
‘This is excellent. It gives them a real chance to get involved and have a closer look at everything.’
Captain Trevor Gulley, the commanding officer of HMS Sultan, said: ‘It’s all about reaching out to the Gosport community and in particular the disabled and disadvantaged children.
‘Part of the services remit is to reach out to the local community.
‘Children play such a big part in all our lives.
‘Servicemen love children so it’s a very natural affinity to outreach to the children.
‘This is the 10th year of this event.’