Weapons Systems Tuning Group Reunion

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WSTG Honours Boards Reinstated

The WSTG Honours Boards in their new location in the Victory Building, HM Naval Base, Portsmouth. (Click on the image for a larger view)

The WSTG Honours Board was conceived as a way of using a generous gift from a retired colleague, Bill Gerrish, based at Ensleigh, Bath. It was, for a number of years, in a prominent place at Milldam House after being unveiled at the ‘WSTG Coming of Age’ celebrations in 1980. From then until the demise of WSTG the names of staff members with 21 years service in the Group were added to the board. Within a few years the board acquired side extensions for the surprising number of staff who had served the qualifying time period.

The tradition continued when WSTG transferred to Central Office Block 2 in the Naval Base where the Boards including one showing the Heads of WSTG were re- mounted.

With the demise of WSTG there were concerns that the boards could end up being scrapped, so in the summer of 2006 Adrian Wright sought permission from Lt Cdr Bill Legge to store the boards at the HMS Collingwood Museum where a small contingent of retired WSTG colleagues worked as volunteers. After almost 10 years in the museum’s safe keeping, once again, there was concern for the future of the boards as the museum was undergoing reorganization and accommodation changes. A stroke of luck occurred, however, when the collection boards were being examined for examples to be recycled for use by HMS Collingwood.

The WSTG boards including that showing the past heads of WSTG were spotted and thought suitable to be re-sited with others in Victory Building Portsmouth Naval Base. Similar items had already been acquired by MCTA  (Marine Capabilty Trials and Assessment) which is the successor organisation to WSTG and CWT (Captain Weapons Trials). The boards have been installed in the MCTA office complex and not only fill a void of bare walls but provide a sense of history, or at least a connection with the past.

As a result 23 September 2016 saw the Boards unveiled again, this time by MCTA Captain Mike Magan RN in the presence of Adrian Wright, Ken Wingate , Dick Barton, Neville Quick (currently MCTA Capability Assurance Group) and Paul Bunyon (all ex WSTG).

Thus the WSTG  Honours Board continues its unusual life from a chance conception to a formal reinstatement  in the Victory Building. For this we are indebted to a number of people: MCTA Captain Mike Magan RN; Navy OP TRG-MWS WE BEMT RADAR Lt Christopher McCaughan RN (Museum Liaison Officer) and the Officer Under Training who first noticed the Boards.

A piece of (WSTG) history

Sad News

We regret that we have to report that Ken Hoad passed away on 11th October 2017 aged 93 after a long battle with cancer. His funeral was held at the Oaks Crematorium in Havant on Tuesday 24th October.  Our sympathies are with his wife of 70 years, Dot, and the rest of his family.

We have also received further sad news that George Durant passed away on 14th October 2017 at the age of 85. Our thoughts are with Fay, Timothy and Katherine. His funeral service was held at 10am on Friday 27th October at the Oaks Crematorium, Bartons Road, Havant .

Sad News - Ken Hoad

Donald Thomas Meakin

It is with much sadness that we report the death of Don Meakin who was diagnosed with lung cancer in December last year. Don died peacefully at home on 26th January 2019. His funeral was held on Tuesday 19th February at St Peter’s Church Titchfield.

Don joined WSTG in the early 1960s initially working in the Sonar section. The majority of his time in the group was however spent working on Electronic Warfare (EW) equipment. He commissioned both passive and early active EW systems on many new-build ships before moving to DARE Portsdown where he joined the procurement division’s Special Projects section in 1985.

He retired in the mid-1990s.  Don was a staunch supporter of the WSTG Reunion group and the picture above was taken at our 2013 Christmas event.

Our condolences are extended to his wife Mary and Family.

It is with great sadness that the Committee learned of the death of Brian Dubber. He died on April 13th, aged 79.  Brian was one of the great characters in WSTG and was well respected by all. He worked on submarine radar for many years and on the early ship fits of the surveillance radar 1022.  We are sure those who knew and worked with him would like to pay their last respects.

The funeral will take place in the North Chapel at Portchester Crematorium on Friday 3 May 2019 at 11.45am. Donations if desired can be made online at www.brian-dubber.muchloved.com or by cheque made payable to Retina UK care of A H Fremantle Funeral Directors 46 South Street Titchfield PO14 4DY.

Brian Dubber

Geoff White

We were very sorry to hear of the death of Geoff White who passed away in Queen Alexandra Hospital on Tuesday 8th October 2019 at the age of 81.

His funeral will be held on Friday 25th October at 1.45pm in the South Chapel at Portchester Crematorium and will be followed by a wake at the Cams Mill Pub on the Cams Hall Estate, Portchester, Fareham (post code PO16 8AA). All are welcome.

Our sincere condolences to Sylvia and the rest of his family.