The History of Army Recreational Diving and the Army Sub-Aqua Diving Association (ASADA)

 

Part 1 - The First Forty Years 1953 - 1993. 

 

Sports diving began after World War 2 when the public’s imagination was captured by the exploits of naval frogmen and a small number of enthusiasts experimenting with surplus military equipment.  It was not until a few years later, inspired by the exploits of Han Hass and Jacques Cousteau and the development of the Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCUBA), that the sport really took off.  By the early 1950s services “vocational“ divers (RE and Navy Ship’s Divers) and a small number of enthusiastic servicemen were participating in sports diving all over the world in their spare time.  Following the formation of the British Sub Aqua Club (BSAC) in 1953 this was done either under BSAC Guidelines derived from military diving regulations, by joining civilian run clubs or was simply self-regulated because sub aqua diving was not recognised by the Services as either adventurous training or a sport. 

 

During the 1950s and 1960s sub aqua diving increased in popularity and a number of small services clubs were formed as far a field as Malta, Cyprus, Gibraltar, Singapore, Hong Kong.   .  In 1961 sub aqua diving was approved as an Adventurous Training activity in the British Army of the Rhine (BAOR) and a Garrison Routine Order (GRO) was issued giving details of methods of operation and safety regulations.[1]  This paved the way for the formation of the first BSAC (Special) branch (No 87) in BAOR at HQ 1(BR) Corps[2] with 12 members.  This was quickly followed by the formation of unit and garrison branches in Berlin, Hameln, Herford, Lippe, Paderborn, Rheindahlen and Nienburg and by late 1963 membership had increased to 80 divers coming from 30 units scattered throughout the command.  Also in late 1963 an updated BAOR GRO on sub aqua diving was issued and in 1964/65 three Dive Marshals courses for BSAC 2nd class divers were run at the Outward Bound Centre, Norway.

 

In 1967 work was being undertaken in MOD(Army) and at command level, particularly in HQ BAOR, to expand Adventurous Training and this included the recognition of sub aqua diving as an Adventurous Training activity throughout the Army. In BAOR, having identified the need for both control of sub aqua diving as an Adventurous Training activity and to better serve the needs of the diving clubs, Maj Peter Ormerod RA led the way by bringing the BAOR clubs together for the first time at a meeting in Bielefeld.   And in 1969 Peter Ormerod formed the BAOR Sub Aqua Federation, ably assisted by Capt Bob Thompson RAMC (Secretary) and Maj Keith Green RAOC with Maj Gen Murray, Chief Engineer, BAOR (who in earlier life fought with Lt Col Johnnie Frost at Arnhem Bridge) as its President.  The HQ BAOR sub aqua diving GRO was then updated and incorporated in BAOR Standing Orders for Adventurous Training. 

 

Also in April 1969 the first overseas BSAC Instructors Course for Army divers was held in BAOR at Rheindahlen with Bob Darby as the BSAC examiner from the UK.  Four out of the 10 Army divers passed and from that point on diving in BAOR really got underway.   Hot on Peter’s heals in Hong-Kong was WO1 Len Charlton RAOC. The RAF were following suit but by 1968 had already formed an Association to oversee RAF ‘recreational’[3] sub-aqua diving worldwide.

 

With sub aqua diving continuing to develop and gain popularity in the UK and overseas commands, in February 1970 a policy letter was issued by MOD (Army Training) that formalised the Army’s requirement for sub aqua diving as an Adventurous Training activity.  In April of that year, Maj Ormerod received for comment a draft Defence Council Instruction (DCI)(Army) on sub aqua diving safety, initially prepared by the Royal Engineers in 1969.  In his reply he argued that too much emphasis had been placed on the RN/RE diving regulations and as such it was inappropriate for sports diving and recommended that the DCI should be redrafted by someone with a BSAC diver qualification and knowledge of running sub aqua clubs.  Not surprisingly, he was given that task and in June both he and Capt Eddie Knight RE represented the Army at HMS Vernon on the first Joint Services Sub Aqua Diving meeting which was chaired by the DDNPTS,  the Services sponsor for sub aqua diving.   In December the Director BSAC offered Maj Ormerod two2 places on the BSAC National Diving Committee (NDC) and he and Capt Thompson attended subsequent meetings as the Army representatives. 

 

In July 1971 agreement was finally reached on issues such as the composition of the Army Association, the DCI, the equipment requirement and costs, dive marshalling, BSAC membership and Army Sports Control Board sponsorship albeit with restrictive provisos.  In August 1971 the DCI[4] was approved and the Army Sub Aqua Diving Association (ASADA) was formed. 

 

ASADA was (and remains) affiliated to the BSAC, the national governing body for the sport, and made up of individual military clubs, the majority being special branches of the BSAC.  It is governed by a General Committee comprising a small Executive Committee based in the UK and representatives from Command Associations.   ASADA is responsible for advising MOD (Army) on all aspects of sub aqua diving and for overseeing Army sub aqua diving worldwide.  It carries out sub aqua diving policy as directed by MOD, with management of the Association delegated to the Executive Committee and Command Associations.[5] 

 

Brig JS Badley (Late RA) was appointed as the first Chairman of ASADA and MOD (Army Training) invited Peter Ormerod to be Vice Chairman and Maj Eddie Knight RCT (Secretary).  Other members of the Executive Committee were Maj Clarke RE (OC RE Diving Unit/Services Diving Advisor), Lt Col J M Gaff RAOC representing UKLF and WO1 Len Charlton (Publicity Officer).  In October 1971 the DCI(A) was finally published confirming the formation of ASADA, its governance as the controlling body for sub aqua diving in the Army[6] and giving guidance to the various Army clubs. As recommended by the Joint Services Sub Aqua Diving meeting and agreed by MOD (Army Training), ASADA then drew up a set of sub aqua diving regulations for MOD(A) based on RN Diving regulations BR 2806 and mandating the use of applicable BR 2806 air diving decompression table (Table 11).  Copies of both documents are in the archived “”Policy” section.

 

By June 1972 formation of all the overseas command was completed and ASADA comprised 42 clubs in the UK, 22 in BAOR, 4 in Cyprus, 3 in Hong Kong and one each in Malta and Gibraltar with roughly 2,000 divers, which was over 10% of the BSAC membership[7].  Len Charlton became the BSAC’s representative in Hong Kong and a member of the National Diving Committee (NDC).

 

In December 1972 the first AGM was called with 25 clubs (out of 42) from UK attending represented by approximately 60 members. The guest speakers were Mike Todd from the BSAC, Lt Cdr Don McLaughlin RN Officer in Charge (OIC) of the RN Sports Diving Centre and Lt Tom Peake RN from the RN/RM Diving Association. The format of the meeting was not dissimilar to today’s AGM and JS Conference. Updates on diving policy and procedures were discussed followed by presentations and slide shows. Unlike today key members then went on to attend the BSAC Diving Officers Conference.

 

During the 1970s sub aqua diving became more widely acknowledged as an important Adventurous Training pursuit. In the UK and overseas diving centres were set up, diving clubs flourished and individuals such as Maj Peter Ormerod mounted numerous high profile, challenging expeditions all over the world. A selection of the more impressive trips can be seen by accessing the archived expedition’s. link. (include hyperlink here)

 

Lt Col Don Phillips RE (who became Chairman ASADA (BAOR) the following year) took part in the first Joint Service expedition to Egmont Island in the Chagos Archipelago. The expedition was led by Sqn Leader “Dickie” Bird RAF, Cdr Alan Baldwin RN was the Deputy Leader and the scientific work was carried out under the direction of Dr David Bellamy. 

 

Also in 1972 the Army started running Adventurous Training sub aqua diving (BSAC) courses at the School of Physical Training South in Bulford under W02 (QMSI) J Munroe APTC.   Pool training took place at Bulford with open water training conducted at Plymouth where courses were accommodated in the barracks of 29 Commando Regiment RA, commanded by Peter Ormerod.  From 1974 the support in Plymouth switched to the newly established Joint Services Sub Aqua Diving Centre (JSSADC) at Fort Bovisand, formed from the RN Sports Diving Centre with the structure of the staff changed to include representatives from all three Services.  The first OIC JSSADC was Lt 'Taff' Laurence RN who was later succeeded by Don McLaughlin. 

 

In 1973 the Joint Services Adventurous Training (JSAT) Scheme[8] was introduced with sub aqua diving as one of the 8 nominated pursuits it recognised.  The JSAT Scheme also recognised 11 Joint Services centres 3 of which supported sub aqua diving: the JSSADC being established at Fort Bovisand; the Cyprus Joint Services Adventurous Training Centre (CJSATC) and the Belize Joint Services Adventurous Training Centre (BJSATC). 

 

In September 1974 WO1 Len Charlton produced the first copy of the ASADA Journal, then known as the Sea Horse. In a little under 2 years he produced 4 issues of the journal. He was a prolific writer and great editor and these were real “bumper” issues. On his retirement he handed over to WO2 Dave Haugh RAOC before going to work for Goldhawk Press, publishers of Sub Aqua Magazine. Those interested in looking at extracts from the first 5 issues can access them below. (HyperlinkClick Here)

 

Following on from the success of the expedition to Egmont Island a second expedition was organised to Danger Island, a British Indian Ocean Territory on the Chagos Bank in 1975. The BBC made a TV documentary of the expedition called “An Island Called Danger”. The communications were looked after by Capt Gordon Raku R Sigs and a full report by him can be found in ASADA Journal Number 5 (HyperlinkTBC). In November of the same year, and a little closer to home, the BSAC organised an expedition to the Shetland Islands. The aim of the expedition was to establish a measure of the ecological state within the sea around the Shetland Islands before the start of offshore drilling for North Sea oil. This would enable others at a later stage to measure the effects of the drilling etc on the local ecology.  Don Phillips and Maj John Griffiths R Sigs represented ASADA(BAOR). Jeremy Hazard, the BSAC Diving Officer, and John Foster, a well know figure in the Diving World in BAOR, also took part and the scientific work was directed by Dr Charles Sheppard of Durham University

 

In 1976, the Joint Services Expedition Trust Committee approved the mounting of the Joint Service expedition to Peros Banhos in the British Indian Ocean Territories organised and led by Maj John Griffiths.  It was supposed to run for 12 months starting in October 1978, but was curtailed after only nine months because Peter Winch, who owned the tender yacht, Paille-en-queue, withdrew it. The yacht had been the only effective link between expedition HQ at Peros Banhos and the US Navy base at Diego Garcia and it’s withdrawal made the expedition untenable. Despite this the expedition was the largest Joint Services expedition to date and the largest marine biological based expedition since the 1905 Percy Sladen expedition to the same area.   The expedition was in 3 phases and the Diving Officers for each phase were; Lt Cdr Andy Ryan RN, Peter Ormerod and the then Maj Bruce McCandlish RE.

 

By the late 70s ASADA’s[9] support to Army sub aqua diving expeditions had grown to included the management of pools of sports diving equipment, boats and compressors held in the UK and BAOR and assistance to those established at the Adventurous Training diving centres in Belize, Cyprus and Gibraltar.   In 1982 Bruce McCandlish was Chairman of ASADA (BAOR) and his Equipment Officer, Capt Marc Moody RAOC,[10] set up a small pool of diving equipment and stores in Sardinia at the RAF base in Decimomannu to support BAOR expeditions based there.   By the mid 80’s the increasing number of BAOR expeditions (not just diving) visiting Sardinia and requirements to support them was beginning to overwhelm the resources of the RAF’s small administration unit.  So in 1987, Maj Rod Leigh QMG RMP, Chairman ASADA (BAOR), seized the initiative and gained. HQ BAOR approval to set up a small Expedition Support Base located in a Villa with Marc Moody’s unit providing the small number of personnel needed to issue the equipment and rations and to provide MT support to each visiting expedition.  This was used by Maj Rod Leigh the following year when he ran the first and very successful overseas Sub Aqua Diving Supervisors (SADS) course in Sardinia.   Mark Moody went on to lead a Joint Services expedition to Lake Titicaca in Bolivia where high altitude Diving Trials were conducted and the Bolivian Navy were trained to dive. Tragically Mark died suddenly of cancer in 1994. 

 

Back in the UK in 1984 Peter Ormerod retired from the Army and became the Diving Consultant to Operation Raleigh and was appointed as Vice President to ASADA.  Lt Col Ernie Archer RAOC succeeded Peter Ormerod as Chairman ASADA and at that time Brig Harry Brown CBE (Late RAOC) was President, Maj Gen C B Pollard, Vice President .   Other’s on the Executive Committee were:

 

§  Lt Col Roger Forrest RAOC (Vice Chairman/Chairman ASADA (UKLF)),

§  Maj Paul Lindsay-Scott ACC (Secretary),

§  Lt Col Roger Mundy RE (Services Diving Advisor, REDE),

§  Maj John Champion RE (Diving Officer ASADA (UKLF)) and

§  Capt Mick Law REME (Equipment Officer ASADA (UKLF)).

 

Lt Col Ernie Archer was a BSAC National Instructor and recipient of the BSAC Wilkinson Sword award.  During his tenure as Chairman he secured the formal support of MOD(PAT) and the Royal Engineer Diving Establishment (REDE) for ASADA liaison visits to overseas commands as an established rather than an informal ad-hoc feature[11].   Ernie Archer tragically died of cancer in 1994

 

In late 1986, following Ernie Archer’s retirement from the Army,[12] Lt Col Roger Forrest took over as Chairman, a post he held for 5 years until late 1993.  Roger served under 3 Presidents: Brig Harry Brown, Maj Gen Bob Hodges CB OBE (late KOBR) (1987-91) and Maj Gen John Barr CBE (late RE) from Feb 1993 and other key members on the Executive Committee during his tenure were:

 

§  Vice Chairman:  Lt Col Bruce McCandlish RE (1986-90); Maj Chris Finnigan RLC (1993-)

§  Chairman ASADA (UKLF) - Lt Col Bruce McCandlish RE (-1986); Maj John Champion RE (1987-88); Maj Rod Leigh QMG RMP (1989-91); Maj Steve Anderson RE (1991-93).

§  Equipment Officer (UKLF) – Capt Mick Law REME (-1987); WO2 ‘Geordie’ Meyers RA (1987-89); Capt Mal Strickland REME (1990-)

§  Secretary: Maj Paul Lindsay-Scott ACC (-1986); Maj Rod Wilson RAEC (1986-90); Maj Mike Opie REME (1990-91); Maj Martin Richley (1992-)

 

Roger Forrest oversaw a number of important changes to the management of the Association. One of the most significant just after he took over as Chairman was gaining the approval of the Joint Services Sub Aqua Diving Committee (JSSADC) to move from single Service sub aqua diving regulations and create the Joint Service Sub Aqua Diving Regulations (JSSADR) with much greater adoption of BSAC safe diving practices.[13]   The JSSADC is chaired by DDNPTS, the Service sponsor for sub aqua diving, and comprised the 3 Services sub aqua diving association chairmen, representatives of the 3 MOD (adventurous training) Service branches and OIC JSSADC Fort Bovisand with specialist advisor representatives as required such as the Institute of Naval Medicine (INM).  Roger Forrest was the chair and driving force of the JS Chairmen’s Working Group tasked with drafting the new JSSADR.   Group Captain DA (Dave) Ray RAF, Cdr David Linguard RN were the other 2 members and after 18 months and 8 revisions the final version was endorsed and published by DNPTS with an effective date of 1 January 1989.

 

In the move to making sub aqua diving within the Services more ‘Joint’, in 1986 ASADA hosted the first Joint Services Sub Aqua Diving Conference at the Army School of Physical Training, Aldershot.   . 

In the same year, agreement was reached with the Regional Depot RAOC at Thatcham for the ASADA (UKLF) pool of diving equipment, previously only stored at the Depot to be maintained and issued by them.  diving[14]. This was the first time that the UKLF pool of sub aqua diving equipment was provisioned, inspected, maintained and issued for sub aqua training and expeditions on an official basis. However, this arrangement did not last long and it was felt that the equipment could be better cared for by a member of the Committee with a better understanding of the equipment. The equipment pool then reverted back to the safe custody of the ASADA (UKLF) Eqpt Offr – Mal Strickland.

In addition to the progress made in policy and equipment Army diving continued to mount ever more challenging expeditions. In 1987 Captain David Wilson RAEC organised the first Army expedition to dive HMS Prince of Wales and Repulse in the South China Sea. Both ships were sunk in 1942 by Japanese torpedo planes just after the attack on Pearl Harbour.   ASADA approved his request to dive to 50 metres on compressed air and it was the first time diving computers had been used officially! The team received technical advice from the late Rob Palmer, a leading light in UK cave and technical diving. The expedition gained a degree of notoriety by conducting accelerated decompression using oxygen enriched mixtures. This was far from mainstream services diving at the time.

In 1988 the BSAC needed to reduce overhead costs and were rationalising the membership on the NDC.  Following the formalisation of the JS Chairmen’s meetings under the JSSADC, the JS Chairmen agreed to demonstrate the ‘Joint’ approach now being taken for sub aqua diving in the Services and proactive support to the BSAC by offering to replace the 3 single service representatives on the NDC with one Joint Services representative.  The chair of the JS Chairmen’s meeting, Roger Forrest, was the first Joint Services representative on the NDC.  

In December 1990, Maj Gen (retd) C B (Barry) Pollard relinquished his appointment as Vice Chairman ASADA after 10 years of service to ASADA.  The following June the Vice Chairman ASADA, Col B A (Bruce) McCandlish (late RE) was appointed as the second Vice President ASADA.  The Vice Chairman post remained vacant until Maj C J (Chris) Finnigan RLC took it over in early 1993. 

Part 2 – A New Dawn 1993-2008

The next 25 years sees ASADA and the Joint Services diving community having to manage advances in cutting edge diving techniques with increased accountability. A difficult task at the best of times but this has had to be done against decreasing budgets and increasing operational tempo. The tenacity of a small number of Individuals desperate not to be constrained by external regulations is testament to the desire within the Army to make Adventure Training truly adventurous. In 1993 Lt Col Steve Anderson RE took over from Roger Forrest as Chairman. Steve authorised the first Army Trimix expedition to dive HMS PHEASANT, a registered war grave which rests near the Orkneys at a depth of 85 meters. The Navy were uncomfortable with the concept of diving from a civilian hard boat with no chamber on site and decided the expedition should not go ahead. Steve persuaded MOD(AT) to approve the expedition on the grounds that it sought to push the boundaries of sub aqua diving as a pursuit under the Joint Services Adventurous Training Scheme which accepted an inherent ‘risk to life and limb’, that risks had been assessed and procedures instigated to mitigate them.  . The expedition members were trained by the late Rob Palmer, a UK pioneer in technical diving and an internationally accomplished cave diver.  Although the trip failed to meet all the objectives everyone came back safe and sound and the Army gained a reputation for being at the forefront of technical diving. The post of Technical Diving Officer was then established on the ASADA Committee.  Also in 1994 the Army Sub-aqua Dive Centre moved open water diving to Portland Dorset and in 1996 a local contract to teach diving courses up to Dive Leader was established under Maj Mal Strickland REME.

In the late 90’s, when Maj Mark Thurlow (R Sigs) was the Chairman, recreational diving in the Services saw a significant shift in policy.  The Health and Safety Executive insisted that members of the services conducting sub-aqua AT were “at work” as they were considered to be “on duty”. The consequence of this was that the Services would have to comply with the Agreed Code of Practise (ACOP) for Recreational Diving Projects produced in 1997.  All divers would now need an annual diving medical carried out by an HSE approved Doctor.  Despite great pressure from ASADA to resist the change, the Superintendent of Diving took the decision that vocational and recreational divers should comply and it took a further 10 years for the diving medical issue to be resolved! Other ramifications from the decision to comply have yet to be fully realised.

It was during the same period that ASADA realised they could no longer properly manage the pool of diving equipment held for training and expeditions.  The amount of equipment had grown considerably and the requirement for annual servicing and cylinder inspections combined with the lack of funds and the ever increasing operational commitments called for a change. After much deliberation the equipment was signed over to the Loan Stores Equipment Pool at Bicester.  The move to Bicester created new problems since the staff there had no technical knowledge of the diving equipment they were managing.  ASADA turned to LAND (ATG(A)) headed up by Col Paul Farrar PARA, ably assisted by Mr Graham Cooke, for help and a much closer working relationship with ATG(A) was established.

At the BSAC National Diving Conference in 2001 it was announced that the BSAC would permit Trimix diving during “Club” dives, this opened the door for the services to introduce mixed gas diving. It also neatly coincided with a request from the Naval Secretariat in the MOD to the then Chairman, Lt Col Guy Wallis PARA, to dive HMS Prince of Wales (at 72m depth) and HMS Repulse (at 65m) to commemorate the 60th Anniversary of their sinking. The 1987 expedition had only been partially successful due to the 50m maximum depth restriction, with BSAC setting the maximum depth for Trimix at 80m the task was now achievable.  Having lobbied the JS Policy Advisory Committee it was finally agreed that Joint Services Regulations would be amended to allow mixed gas diving. In 2002 the first Joint Services Trimix Expedition took place to replace the ensigns on both vessels and lay a commemorative plaque on the Flag Ship, The Prince of Wales. The expedition was a complete success and was televised in the BBC production “Death of the Battleship”.

 

In 2002 the Army Sub-Aqua Dive Centre moved to Bovington following the closure in 2001 of the School of PT at Bulford. Control was exercised through the APTC School at Aldershot and training continued to be run under Maj (Retd) Mal Strickland. Since then the Centre has continued to thrive and a representative from Bovington has a permanent place on the ASADA Committee.

 

In 2005 Lt Col John Gibbon (RA) joined the committee as the Diving Officer, later becoming the Deputy Chairman. John was also appointed by the BSAC as the Joint Services Representative on NDC in 2005. With Bovisand running mainly entry level courses it was realised that the Army needed to run its own instructor courses if recreational diving was to survive.  John introduced a number of annual training evolutions covering Instructor Foundation, Open Water and Theory and Practical Instructor exams/courses.

 

Also in 2005 ASADA joined the 21st Century and Kelvin Prevett established the ASADA Web Site. This proved invaluable method of contacting all Army divers and keeping past and present members informed of developments in the sport in both the Joint Services and more particular the Army.  Kelvin and Sgt Si Law have been responsible for establishing the ASADA Archive which first appeared on the web in 2008. The Archive is divided into six main areas; Policy, Expedition Reports, ASADA Journal, Press Cuttings, Photographs and Equipment. All the documents and photographs contained in the archive are listed at the bottom of this page and can be accessed by clicking the link. Much of the information contained here was kindly donated by Len Charlton and special thanks should go to Col Bruce McAndlish, Lt Col Roger Forrest, Lt Col Steve Anderson,

Lt Col Don Phillips and John Griffiths, for their assistance and corporate memory in compiling the history.

 

This brings us right up to date; ASADA have continued to expand and develop the organisation.  In 2008 ASADA lead a highly successful expedition to the Republic of Ireland, hosted by the Irish Diving Group. In addition, the Chairman has helped with drafting an “Overhead Environment Course” for the BSAC and lead the first “Cave Diving” Expedition to France in June 2008. At the end of the year ASADA plan to run training for disabled Army personnel as part of the “Battle Back” Scheme to help with the rehabilitation of wounded personnel from operational theatres such as Iraq and Afghanistan, culminating with an expedition to Cyprus in 2009.

 

Policy

 

ASADA AGM, 13-14 Nov 1975

Application to join the Under Water Federation of Hong Kong 28 March 1974

Application to join the Under Water Federation of Hong Kong 28 March 1974 – Reply

BSAC Instructor Training Programme 3-37 Pages 1-27

BSAC List of Branches March 1971 1-8

BSAC The National Diving Committee 1972 Diving Incidents Summary Pages 1-2

Directors Report to the AGM 16 Mar 1974 (Page 3 missing) Pages 1-7

Hong Kong SADA (Army) Bulletin No4 Jan 1973 Pages 1-22

Minutes of of an ASADA Central Committee Meeting Fri 20 June 1975 Pages 1-6

Report on World Diving Conference London Oct 73 Pages 1-5

Sub Aqua Adv Trg Decompression Tables 5 May 1976 Various Pages of correspondence

 

Expedition Reports

 

Exercise First Plunge II - Malta Exped 1974

Exercise Low Dive - HK Exped to Singapore Aug 1974

Expedition Final Dive HK Dive Club to New Zealand March 1974

Expedition South Pacific July 1973 JSSAC Hong Kong

 

ASADA Journal

 

Sea Horse 1, Summer 1974

Sea Horse 2, Spring 1975

Sea Horse 3, Spring 1975

Sea Horse 4, Summer 1975

Sea Horse 5, Spring 1975

 

Newsletters

 

Newsletter No1 – 22 April 1968

Newsletter No2 – 21 May 1968

Newsletter No6 – 01 March 1969

Newsletter No7 - 22 May 1969

 

Press Cuttings

 

6 OFP Barracudas in Naples RAOC Gazette August 1971

Aqua Diving catching on in Colony -Hong Kong Standard Sunday August 26 1973

Army Divers Explore Old Well in Barnard Castle Durham

Basildon Warrant Officer in Bella Napoli HQ 4 Div PR Release

British Instructors giving instruction in Hong Kong - Hong Kong Standard Thursday April 11 1974

Exercise Channel Dive Sixth Sense Friday 2 July 1971

Exercise Rock Dive ROAC Gazette February 1980

Members of Lisburn Military Sub-Aqua Club searching the River Lagan

Newly formed Army Sub-Aqua Club began deep water programme

RAOC Gazette, page 332 - Apr 1975

Rheindahlen Sub Aqua Club Expedition June 1974

Rheindahlen Sub Aqua Club The Rheindahlen Bulletin January 1971

Rheindahlen Sub Aqua Club to Elba The Rheindahlen Bulletin August 1971

Royal Army Ordnance Corps Gazette Front Cover March 1969

Southend Standard Billericay Wickford Thurs Sept 30 1971

Sub Aqua Diving in the Army ROAC Gazette April 1975

SUB-AQUA May 1977 (page 11)

Sunday Post Hong Kong Sunday January 20 1974

Warrant Officer Len Charlton diving expedition to Naples

Wickford Sub-Aquarist kept clear of Nudist Colony Friday July 21 1967

WO1 Graham Ford entering water at Bacoli near Naples

 

Photograph Gallery

 

Army and Navy Divers on exercise in New Zealand

Army Divers in England going into 150 yr old well in Pub called The Old Well

BFBS Presenter Andrew Pastouna reporting on Making a Splash for cash

Celle Divers reach the end of 7 km Swim Making a Splash for cash

Classroom based instructor training

Divers Kiel 20 Feb 1967

JSSAC instructing a member of the Black Watch to dive in Australia

Martin Broadfoot 1982 RE Diver

Members from all of Hong Kongs BSAC Clubs

Members of Diving Club Celle Making a Splash for cash

Mr Tony Dix teaching a group in Hong Kong

Photo Montage Bovington Dive Club

Photo Montage Diving Pub in London and Kiel Divers

Photo Montage of Len Charlton’s spear fishing days

Pool Training entry drills

Pool training mask drills

Rheindahlen dive club 1966

Rheindahlen Divers showing their catch

Sold down the river and it's all for charity Making a Splash for cash

Sub-Aqua, Mar 1976 (front cover)

Tony Liddicoat & family  in 1982

Tony Liddicoat trg RE Jnr Ldrs in 1982

Visit to Hong Kong  by Major Peter Ormerod Vice Chairman of British Army Divers talking to Len Charlton

 

Equipment

 

Diving And Breathing Apparatus Technical Handbook Issue 1 29 Feb 1968 Pages 1-15

Diving And Breathing Apparatus Technical Handbook Surface Demand Issue 1 29 Feb 1968 Pages 1-4

Submarine Products Diving Catalogue Pages 1-13



[1]  Peter Ormerod SummrySummary of AT Sub Aqua Diving 1961-72 dated 15 Nov 72.

[2]  ASADA Chairman’s,  Roger Forrest, brief to new President, Maj Gen Bob Hodges , GOC NI, 20 Oct 87.

[3]  Have made emphasis of the word recreational because RAF view was more on a recreational activity than a sport.  Believe they still get funding from RAF Sports funding/grants whereas Army’s is primarily through the G3 Trg and we are not allowed to get Army sports funding.  

[4]  Publication delays meant DCI was not actually published until Oct 1971.

[5] ASADA Constitution Sep1981(amended Nov 83). 

[6]  Wanted to introduce “controlling body for the Army” early and seems an appropriate place to make the point even if the wording in the DCI mentioned was slightly different.  Some of the changed/additional wording taken from DCI(A) 117, 1986 and is relectedre-elected in the ASADA Constitution Sep1981(amended Nov 83). 

[7] 10% is gereralisationgeneralisation based on BSAC Web – stating 13,000 members in 1969.  Not sure of Ref for the 2000 Army members.

[8] Draft Charter for JSAT Scheme ( in 1989 folder)

[9] Not sure of dates when pools of Eqpt were founded but believe this as an appropriate place to make the point and provide lead in to expansion of pools by Mark Moody.  First over-seas SADS bit moved to later para – 1988 and pool related.

[10]  Capt Mark Moody’s Brief for Expeds to Sardinia dated 10 Apr 87.

[11]  Mins ASADA Exec Ctee Mtg 11 Sep 86

[12] (Not death - Ref Chairman ASADA UKLF (Bruce McCandlish) Annual Report to ASADA dated 20 Nov 86)

[13]  Earlier text and Peter Ormerods’s summary shows first meeting  JSSAD (C) held in Jun 70.   Confusion here with the numerous JJSAD working groups/parties/meetings set up.  The ‘informal’ JS Association Chairmens’ meeting being one, the JSSAD Policy Committee and JSSD Decompression WG/P being others noted in files. Also the same abbreviations used for JJSAD Centre Fort Bovisand and the JSSAD Conference .  Thus in documents and minutes reference on a subject to simply a/the Joint Services meeting or JJSADC should be treated with caution.   Also note that a major contentious issue for Roger with the new JSSADR was his (and the ASADA committee’s ) concern that the desired move away from ‘vocational’ regulations to compliance with BSAC safe diving procedures would be undermined which led to his insistence that the JS ChairmensChairmens’ meeting should be the forum for deciding sub aqua diving regulations and amendments. D/DNPTS could not agree that the regulations could not be changed without the agreement of the JS Chairmen [I believe that fundamentally this was because JS Chairmen were MOD’s subject matter ‘advisors’ and regulations were a matter of policy and as such decisions on the rested with MOD/DNPTS]. In the end Roger reluctantly had to concede in order to get the JSSADR endorsed and published. Lastly, the new JSSADR also included and mandated BR 2806 Air Decompression Table 11 and not just requirement for SADS.  

[14] Eqpt pool also supported unit expeditions i.e. not just ASADA clubs.