Mansfield students get inside track on new Navy warship

West Nottinghamshire College students on the deck of HMS Prince of WalesWest Nottinghamshire College students on the deck of HMS Prince of Wales
West Nottinghamshire College students on the deck of HMS Prince of Wales | Other 3rd Party
Public services students from West Nottinghamshire College in Mansfield swapped the classroom for Liverpool’s docks last week.

The group of 25 students were fortunate to be able to see HMS Prince of Wales, one of the Royal Navy’s most powerful warships up-close, during its week-long visit to Liverpool.

The ship, which weighs 65,000 tonnes, is the second of the UK’s giant new aircraft carriers and boasts a 280-metre-long flight deck, which the students were able to have a tour of, getting right to the top of the flight ramp which has a 28-metre drop.

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As well as seeing the impressive external of the ship with aircraft such as a Wildcat and Merlin helicopters students were able to tour inside, seeing the main hold for the aircraft.

Students were able to speak to crew members as well as find out more about careers in the Royal Navy and build their own Lego version of the ship.

Matt Smedley, 18, from the level three BTEC extended diploma in public services said: “It was really interesting to look around and see the latest military technology.

“We got to see the different helicopters such as a Merlin, Wildcat and Sea King and went in the cockpit of a Chinook.”

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Ryan King, 18, another student on the diploma course, added: “It gave us different ideas for careers such as Royal Marine Commandos, the Navy and RAF.

“The most exciting part was being able to go inside the helicopters.

Alan Viggers, public services tutor said: “I was so impressed by the ship – it was awesome and I know our students really enjoyed the opportunity – this week being the first time that members of the public have been on-board.

“Students were happy to ask the crew many questions both about the ship and life on board as well as getting their questions answered about careers in the Royal Navy.”