Young sailor graduates from minehunters’ prep course

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A MINE warfare specialist is celebrating after graduation from his Royal Navy course.

Able Rate (Mine Warfare) Charlie Bennett, 22, from Fareham, has finished his ‘phase two’ training with the base’s Victory Squadron.

AR Bennett said he was proud of his achievement, which had followed a lot of hard work.

He said: ‘Joining the Royal Navy has made me realise my own potential and what I am capable of.

‘I’m proud of my achievements and what I have overcome throughout my 

AR Bennett received his certificate from Captain Phil Milburn, who is captain of the navy’s mine warfare and patrol vessels, diving and fishery protection.

AR Bennett joined the Royal Navy in February this year after being inspired by his family members who have served in the armed forces and his interest in travelling the world.

He earlier attended Crofton School in Stubbington.

During his course, AR Bennett represented the navy in the inter-service rugby championships.

He was also the navy’s flag bearer at the Rugby World Cup in Cardiff.

At HMS Collingwood, AR Bennett undertook a mine warfare course where he learnt about various types of mines, how they operate and how they are used in 

He also learnt how to detect mines and minefields using mine-hunting sonar and how to launch and operate the remote-controlled mine-disposal vehicle.

AR Bennett is now joining the navy’s mine countermeasures Squadron 2.

As a mine warfare specialist on board a navy vessel, AR Bennett will be doing a vital job, responsible for the making the seas safer for the Royal Navy and civilian ships.

HMS Collingwood is the home of the Maritime Warfare School which provides training to officers and ratings in specialisations including weapon engineering, communications, and warfare.