Roy Wood

Roy Wood served on HMS Gambia at some point in his career. Unfortunately I do not know when or in what capacity. He could possibly have been the Stoker Mechanic Wood that served on the 1952 - 1954 commission.

The following article appeared in the Royal Navy Association's publication, "The Semaphore Circular" of June 2015.

Roy WoodIt is with great sadness that the Hereford Branch has to announce that S/m Roy Wood, President of Hereford RNA and Life Vice President of the RNA Crossed the Bar on Saturday 9th May 2015 at the age of 84. The funeral took place on Friday 22nd May at Hereford Crematorium, and afterwards at the Railway Club.

S/m Roy joined the Royal Navy at the age of 15 in 1946 and trained at HMS St Vincent at Gosport before serving on several ships including HMS Gambia, Alamein, Wizard, Triumph and Opossum where his tours of duty took him to the Far East, South Africa and Korea. Towards the end of his service he served on the shore based torpedo training ship HMS Defiant and on HMS Vanguard during her dry dock refit. His last commission was on HMS Opossum, which he always said was his favourite boat and he continued to attend their reunions annually for many years. He was discharged in 1956 after 12 years' service and then joined the Royal Naval Reserve for a further 10 years. Whilst in service Roy excelled in the boxing ring and his agility and nimbleness probably helped in his role as buoy jumper on the Opossum.

He joined the Hereford Branch of the Royal Naval Association in June 1974 and quickly got heavily involved with the committee and took on the role of Branch Treasurer for 9 years. In 1979 the Hereford Branch had over 100 full members this was partly down to Roy and he was always very proud of the fact that for a land locked branch the membership was very high. When he stood down as Treasurer he was elected as Vice Chairman for 3 years and then progressed to Chairman for another 2 years and finally served as Assistant Treasurer for 4 years. In 1993 Roy was elected as the National Council Member for Area 7 a post he held for 8 years until he voluntarily stood down at the Annual Conference in 2001.

He really excelled in this role especially working with the formation and promotion of new RNA Clubs. He was extremely popular with members in the Area, always approachable and highly respected not only by members but also by the National Council. He travelled all over the country for branch, Area meetings and Conferences liaising on issues relating to all aspects of the RNA. In 1995 he received the Sword of Honour on behalf of Area 7 for the best recruiting record and the following year attended the Royal Garden Party at Buckingham Palace.

In 1994 the Antenna from HMS Antelope, which had been presented to the Hereford branch was loaned to Hereford City Council for display in the Town Hall. This is something that Roy constantly reminded the Hereford committee of "Don't forget it belongs to Hereford RNA" he would say. He was elected as Branch President in 1999 and in 2001 was honoured with a life Membership from the branch. He was then elected as Area 7 President a post he relinquished in 2013 when Hereford Branch transferred to Area 8.

His final Honour was being given a Life Vice President by the National Council, one of only 13 in the whole Association, for all his work as Area 7 NCM. This obviously is proof that he was held in great admiration by the RNA and he will be greatly missed for his humour, comradeship and loyalty to the Members of the Hereford branch of the RNA. "May he find safe anchorage".