Navy drops in to visit academy

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Montrose Academy pupils had the chance recently to see over an operational helicopter when the Royal Navy dropped in for a visit.

To mark the decommissioning of HMS Edinburgh, the ship’s Lynx helicopter toured round four Scottish schools last week to give youngsters an insight in to life in the ‘senior service’.

The ship, the Navy’s largest Type 42 Destroyer and the last in service, berthed last week in Leith docks for a six-day visit to the capital on the latest leg of a round-Britain farewell tour which will end in Portsmouth next month, after which it will be formally decommissioned.

As well as being given a tour of the helicopter, which landed on the school playing fields, and being briefed on its capabilities, pupils and staff also enjoyed a presentation on HMS Edinburgh’s 30-year history.

Launched in 1983, the ship is the largest of the Type 42 Destroyers and one of the oldest in the British fleet, covering almost 800,000 miles during its active service which until recently included being part of the Royal Navy’s South Atlantic Patrol.

The Type 42 Destroyers will be replaced with the Type 45 class which are double the weight and equipped with the latest missile technology.

Bruce Pandrich, depute dead teacher, said: “Montrose Academy pupils and staff are proud and honoured to be chosen as one of only four schools, including Perth Academy, Mearns Academy and Gordonstoun to receive a visit from HMS Edinburgh’s crew as part of the ship’s farewell tour.

“The academy has strong links with HMS Montrose and has been supported by the Navy and Royal Marines and their liaison link, Warrant Officer Martin Towers, on many occasions.

“Once again this visit will enrich the curriculum and experiences of learners at the academy.”