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Darfield ‘Youth In Boys’ Naval Service

October 1957

South Yorkshire Times October 19, 1957

Darfield ‘Youth In Boys’ Naval Service

A Seventeen-And-A-Half year old Darfield youth, David Michael Atkinson, son of Mr. and Mrs. John Atkinson, of Barnsley Road, Darfield, is enjoying his new life in the Royal Navy.

After leaving Darfield Foulstone School he took up work with Wombwell Foundry. Interested in engineering, he suddenly decided to join the junior mechanics, in the Boys’ Service of the Royal Navy. He was then 16 ½ years of age and signed on for 10 years.

After a period at a school at Torpoint, Cornwall he later joined H. M. S. Maidstone as junior engineering mechanic. Since then he has been to various countries, including Spain, Gibraltar, Sweden, and Norway. His last trip abroad was to Helsinki before joining the N.A.T.O Forces for exercises – his ship being a depot submarine repair ship. Hs next journey to Rotterdam included calls to many ports.

While at Gibraltar in the Spring, “Britannia” tied up alongside them; the Duke of Edinburgh was aboard. When at Invergordon, the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh went aboard his ship during the reviewing of the Fleet at Invergordon.

David had a proud moment then. It was in the early summer, when they returned from Copenhagen. Among the varied ships which tied up alongside them were American. Russian and French. The French ships took David’s eye, and he says they are very smart.

David loves his life at sea, and the many and varied changes which accompany it. His sisters and brother at Darfield, eagerly awaited letters and snaps