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Author Topic: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham  (Read 60001 times)

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Offline WO1RNR

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #37 on: December 06, 2011, 14:33:53 »
Some photos from Collingwood Block HMS Wildfire 1985 to 1994


On the square behind the two cars stood a mast which formerly stood outside the Wardroom HMS Pembroke (pic to follow)

Offline WO1RNR

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #36 on: December 06, 2011, 14:31:19 »

Offline WO1RNR

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #35 on: December 06, 2011, 14:30:08 »


I think this building is now a care home. you can see the adoption scroll in one of my earlier postings

Offline WO1RNR

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #34 on: December 06, 2011, 14:27:30 »
Here are some more photos from my collection, hope they arent too dull

Offline kyn

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #33 on: November 24, 2011, 08:00:33 »
One other of our members worked here also, he doesn't use the forum very often though.  Thank you for adding these pictures, they are really interesting!

Offline WO1RNR

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #32 on: November 24, 2011, 00:00:11 »
I dont know if it means i am ancient but i am the only one still serving from all these pictures and the only Wildfire (Chatham) Rating left.
I was a very young sailor here.

Offline WO1RNR

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #31 on: November 23, 2011, 23:55:39 »









Offline kyn

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #30 on: November 19, 2011, 17:35:25 »
Hi WO1RNR, thank you for your post.  I would be very interested in any storys or memories you have from your time there!

Offline WO1RNR

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #29 on: November 19, 2011, 15:07:45 »
I joined the RNR in Feb 1982 at HMS WILDFIRE (down the hole) and served there until 1985 when we moved to Collingwood Block Khyber Road until the closure of Wildfire in 1994 under "options for change". It was a large size Reserve Unit reporting to Flag Officer Medway.
I had the honour of carrying the RN Colour at the closure of WILDFIRE (Collingwood) in 1994 a very sad day, i have a dvd of the ceremony, which is very moving. I am still serving now as the RNRs first ever Warrant Officer, strangely enough I have just taken over as 2 I/C at HMS PRESIDENT Medway Division in the Old Collingwood Block, full circle I guess.
HMS WILDFIRE still exists as the RNR Unit a Northwood in Middlesex.

I have many happy memories of drill nights down the tunnel, we used to train how quickly we could run up to the top of the tunnel slope to secure the main doors in an emergency. There was even a Nutty store and cinema down there. I did a few exercises down there and have some good photos which i will put up on here.

Our mess was in a nissan hut by the car park at the top, we also had some lovely large blue gates with an RN crest whcih were sadly stolen soon after we closed.


Offline Bilgerat

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #28 on: August 11, 2011, 21:23:28 »
In answer to the post about Wildfire's name before it became Wildfire - don't think it had a name. I think it was simply called Nore ACHQ (Area Command Headquarters).
"I did not say that the French will not come, I said they will not come by sea" - Lord St Vincent

Offline Merv

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #27 on: August 11, 2011, 01:46:20 »
Its History has HMS Wildfire was very brief, searched on Nore Command will produce far more History, it was a vital cog during WW2.
Nore Command transfered from Queenborough around 1885 to the site.
Admiral Sir John Tovey finished his career there and lived in the Big House located in the area above known has The Admirals Gardens.
John Toveys role in sinking of The Bismark is well worth researching

The Tunnels were built by Cornish Tin Miners

seafordpete

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #26 on: May 24, 2011, 19:03:21 »
There was HMS Wildfire 1, 2, 3 etc all sub units of the main one originally.
 The Navy Discipline act also required each shore base to have a nominal ship (often no more than a trawler) as there was some loophole in the act that stated courts martial had to be held on a ship as there were no land bases when the Act was enabled. As an example HMS Forward at Newhave was originally (sept 1939)  the RNVR Drill Hall, but had HMS Spitfire as nominal ship which was often recorded as HMS Forward, 1942 saw the tunnels built as a Sub Command and they became Forward, the drill hall  then became Forward2 as did the sites in the town handling accounts and the coastal craft which then became HMS Aggressive. Simple (not)

Offline Sylvaticus

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #25 on: May 24, 2011, 18:21:05 »
It's always tricky keeping track of RN ship names, both floating and shore, as they're constantly changing. When this Gillingham story started, HMS Wildfire was at Sheerness until it closed in 1957. That's presumably when the name was passed on to Gillingham. What was the Gillingham establishment called during WW2, was it Pembroke or something else? The name has now moved on again and refers to an establishment in Northwood, London.

tel074

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #24 on: May 24, 2011, 13:28:25 »
The tunnels were under what is now a wooded area opposite the houses that are between Wyles Street and Mill Road.  That gateway was also the rear entrance to the barracks which was, I think, called Admiralty Gate and used by the Wrens and us RAF bods.  Just inside this gate was the RAF huts which were surrounded to window height by an earth banking.  The huts are now gone and the banking is covered by trees.
The RAF personnel (all 18 of us) were billeted with the RN in the barracks in Grenville Block. It was handy using the rear gateway as this meant that we on ly had a short walk to the NAAFI Club which was at the top of Medway Road on the left where it meets the main road.
I really enjoyed my 16 months at Chatham/Gillingham and was very disappointd to see how it had all changed when I last visited  about 14 years ago, and at the state of the underground Operations Rooms etc as these were in pristine condition when I was there in 1957.

Offline Bilgerat

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Re: HMS Wildfire, Gillingham
« Reply #23 on: July 25, 2010, 23:20:42 »
Looking at the car park adjacent to the new college buildings from Medway Road, you'd be directly over the tunnels if you stood on the right hand side of the car park.
"I did not say that the French will not come, I said they will not come by sea" - Lord St Vincent

 

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