Lewis becomes Navy officer

Midshipman Lewis Matthews.
Midshipman Lewis Matthews.

A 19-year-old from Bridlington has celebrated his formal commissioning as a Royal Navy Officer on parade at Britannia Royal Naval College.

Midshipman Lewis Matthews was one of 131 Officer Cadets who took part in the parade, watched by their families, friends and distinguished guests, including the Fleet Commander and Deputy Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Admiral Sir Philip Jones, who was the VIP inspecting officer.

To earn his place on the parade ground, Lewis completed an intensive 30-week training course, which was split into three distinct 10 week phases. While the course predominately takes place at the world renowned College in Dartmouth, the training includes a three week ship acquaint when Lewis was assigned to the Type 45 destroyer HMS Defender, while the ship was operating in UK waters.

Lewis said: “I’m really happy to be passing out of Britannia Royal Naval College and that all my hard work has paid off. I started out living in a 28-man cabin, nicknamed the zoo. I had the best time of my training there, living with my colleagues who have now become some of my closest friends.

“Other highlights of the course include pushing myself mentally and physically to pass the week-long exercise on Dartmoor undertaking leadership tasks. Showing my full leadership potential during the river based leadership week on the Dart was also a highlight. Now I’m looking forward to a long and exciting career as a Royal Navy Officer.”

The former pupil of Headlands School and Sixth Form embarked on his Naval career in 2014, shortly after completing his A Levels.

He said: “The Royal Navy offered me the strong structured lifestyle I was looking for, with every day being a new challenge. I also get to take charge of my own group of people and have the responsibility of making sure they are all getting what they need, helping them also to progress.”