Monument to RN mine warfare and diving personnel to be unveiled

A monument in the form of a bronze statue will be unveiled at Gunwharf Quays in Portsmouth next year to pay tribute to the Royal Navy’s mine warfare and diving history.

More than £250,000 has been raised to find the one-and-a-quarter life size monument, created by sculptor Mark Richards.

The sculpture, which will be revealed on March 25 2020, will stand in one of the pools at Gunwharf, formerly the home of HMS Vernon.

Vernon started life in 1876 as a training establishment accommodated on board ships afloat in Portsmouth Harbour.  In 1923, it moved ashore to the site that is now Gunwharf Quays and became a centre for training and trials of many forms of undersea warfare, including mine warfare and diving. 

It closed in 1986 and the monument of a contact sea mine and two divers commemorates that part of naval history.

Project Vernon has a website at www.vernon-monument.org and a Facebook group at www.facebook.com/groups/vernonmonument.