Dame Mary Peters visits HMS Raleigh
OLYMPIC gold medallist Dame Mary Peters made a trip to HMS Raleigh to meet some of its newest recruits.
Whilst there she spoke of her pride in her role as an Honorary Captain in the Royal Navy Reserve.
Dame Mary, who famously won gold for Great Britain at the 1972 Olympics, visited the training base in Torpoint to see how fitness plays a key role in fostering team spirit and discipline amongst Royal Navy recruits.
She saw a group of trainees undergo an initial military fitness session, a disciplined method of fitness which focuses on developing co-ordination and individual physical strength and endurance.
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Dame Mary then went on to watch another class of recruits work together to complete the obstacle course.
Speaking to the recruits at the obstacle course she said: "People say sometimes life isn't competitive, believe me it is and this activity has shown it this morning. There was competition between you all, but in good spirits.
"You've all got a sparkle in your eyes of wanting to be winners. I'm so proud to see you all enjoying what you're doing and I wish you every success in your future careers."
Captain Bob Fancy, the Commanding Officer of HMS Raleigh, said: "To be fully effective in an operational role, servicemen and women must be physically and mentally fit. They must also possess self-discipline, stamina, courage and a competitive spirit; qualities shared with professional athletes like Dame Mary.
"The physical education programme delivered at HMS Raleigh during initial naval training develops these qualities. We are delighted that Dame Mary has found time to visit us."
As part of her visit Dame Mary was also shown the training carried out at HMS Raleigh's Sea Sense Training Centre on the River Lynher and presented certificates of achievement to a class undergoing training at the Defence Maritime Logistics School.
She also visited the new Heavy Replenishment-at-Sea demonstrator.
To complete her visit Dame Mary took the salute at the passing-out-parade when the latest recruits to complete their initial naval training marched out in front of their families and friends.
Dame Mary said: "I'm just thrilled to be here at HMS Raleigh. To see the Ratings just bubbling with enthusiasm and pride does my heart good, because my whole life has been about encouraging the next generation.
"These are our future, the men and women who will be leading our country in just a few years time, so to see them dedicating themselves to the hard work and preparation required is wonderful.
"Being here with young people inspires me to continue the work I do over in Northern Ireland. I'm very proud to be wearing my uniform and to be taking the salute at the passing-out-parade today."