Submariners' fundraising mission

Two submariners based at HMS Raleigh are on a mission to raise £5,000 to secure their place on a charity Arctic survival challenge next year.

Lieutenants (Lt) Robin Goldsworthy and Fred Flood have signed up for a challenge, organised by the Royal British Legion (RBL), which will take them to the wilderness of Northern Sweden, just 150km south of the Arctic Circle.

Lt Goldsworthy said:  “The expedition is eight days.  We will spend the first half living in a very basic lodge, cooking our meals etc, while we learn to survive in the hostile environment. The second phase sees us surviving outdoors sleeping in a traditional tent to start, then graduating to a shelter that we’ve made from the surrounding trees and the final night we’ll be in an ice cave that we’ve dug.”

The two men will be among a 15-strong group taking part in the expedition in February 2021.  They signed up at the suggestion of Lt Goldsworthy’s wife to do something different and test themselves in an extreme environment.

I’ve actually been to the North Pole before, by submarine, so everyone is a bit jealous of that. You could say that being on a submarine is operating in an extreme environment itself, but this is a very different type of challenge for us. It’s nothing like we’ve ever done before, so it should be exciting. The lodge has no electricity, running water or amenities and we’ve been told that the ice cave can reach a balmy 0 degrees at its warmest.

Lt Flood

To take part the RBL has asked each participant to raise a minimum of £2,500 and all fundraising activity must be for the benefit of the Legion’s vital work.

Lt Goldsworthy said:  “We’ve paid our initial fee to cover our flights and now we need to raise the money.  We’ve got lots of plans for things we are going to take part in and organise, such as a charity auction that we are hoping local businesses will support.  We’d also like to tie something in with the Remembrance services in November by coming up with some ideas of how we can link the two.

Lt Flood added:  “To prepare there’s an amount of training the RBL put on, so people don’t walk in completely blind.  For us though it’ll be making sure that we are fit enough to undertake all the rigours of surviving in that kind of environment.”

Originally from Exeter, Lt Goldsworthy, aged 38, joined the Royal Navy 20 years ago, while Lt Flood is from Truro.  The 29-year-old joined the Royal Navy in 2015. Both men currently work as instructors at the Royal Naval Submarine School at HMS Raleigh, passing on their experience of weapons engineering to new recruits to the Silent Service.

Explaining why the two men were keen to support the RBL, Lt Goldsworthy said:  “The RBL is a fantastic charity.  There’s a lot of military charities out there, but the British Legion is one of the biggest ones. They are in the almost unique position of understanding what it means to be a serving member of the Armed Forces, but perhaps more importantly it’s the families of those who’ve served in the Armed Forces and the support the RBL gives them all the time. Also, they play a major role in looking after our veterans, which is something I also think is extremely important and that’s why it’s such a worthy cause.”

Members of the public who wish to support the submariners’ online, can do so online by clicking on the following link:- https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/goldieandfredicex2021