Navy Combat Chooksstoker


 If you are able to assist with the following please contact David Plummer at email address:


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Good afternoon,


This time it is one from me requesting assistance from all those old salts with really good memories, probably most likely of the seaman category, who served in HMAS Stalwart.



I am currently working at the Master Attendant's Office in Sydney for duties with the IFR, pending my retirement from the PNF early next year.   One of the tasks I have just completed is the positioning of Number 3A Buoy in Man of War Anchorage to the former location of the old EMS Mooring.  The buoy is now in exactly in the same position as the former buoy although it is only a 3 leg 1st Class rather than a 4 leg first class buoy.


It is intended to use the re-established mooring for HMAS Success, thereby releasing wharf space and also providing an additional berth for visiting Australian submarines and frigates.  When Success eventually pays off the mooring will also provide a berth pending ultimate disposal - which is now a very lengthy process.


My problem, and the reason for this email, is that I am having difficulty locating any information on how the chain cable was secured on Stalwarts's quarterdeck and also how it was secured on the shore line.  I have some vague memories from my very brief time onboard and also from being berthed outboard when I was in Moresby and we were in Sydney for the bicentenary but that is about it.


Could you please send this email out to your contacts and ask is anyone can:


a.    provide me with contact details for any former COs or XOs that could provide me with Command level advice on how the ship went about Mediterranean Mooring


b.    provide me with any recollections on how the quarterdeck gear worked - how the two stern mooring chains were brought inboard and what it was secured to (at the moment I am assuming it would have been brought in by a wire around a capstan and then the cable would have been secured to a Blake and Bottle screw Slip in the same way as the fo'csle operates.


c.    provide me with any recollections of how the two stern mooring chains were secured on the shore side.  The bollards are still there but I have no idea how the cable was secured to the bollards.


d.    advise what the size of the anchor cable was - I am assuming it was the same size as the anchor cable and therefore around 2 5/8 to 2 3/4 inch ?


e.    advise what was done with the stern mooring chains when the ship wasn't there.


f.    and for the stokers - does anyone remember what shore services Stalwart received at the mooring ?


Any advice, and in particular any photographs that are not currently available on the net (and I have searched extensively), would be most gratefully received.


These are the last 8 Commanding Officers of HMAS Stalwart.  My rough calculation is that, presuming they are still alive, they will all be at least in their mid 60s to mid 70s.  Does anyone have contact details for them ?


CAPT I.A. Callaway, RAN

28 November 1979

CAPT M. DeV. Salmon, RAN

13 April 1981

CAPT M.S. Unwin, RAN

4 January 1983

CMDR D. Collingridge, LVO RAN

25 November 1984 (temporary)


14 January 1985

CAPT B. Wilson, RAN

23 January 1987

CAPT M.T. Dunne, RAN

19 January 1989

CMDR C.E. Constance, RAN

15 December 1989


Funnily enough Captain's Salmon and Unwin were very close friends of the family with whom we have completely lost touch since they retired and Captain Dunne (then LCDR) was at HMS Dolphin when I flirted with the idea of becoming a submariner in 1979.




David Plummer





Moorings Officer

Office of the Master Attendant

Garden Island



Tel:      02 9359 5102

Mob:    0477 758 684 (work)







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