February 9, 2007
Brother and sister in training for a life at sea

Trainee Royal Navy Steward Janel Laborde from Saint Vincent arrived at HMS Raleigh in England to begin her transformation from a civilian into sailor just as her older brother, Shadale, completed his course.

Budding Engineering Technician Shadale joined the Royal Navy last November to begin eight weeks of intensive training to teach him the basic skills he will rely upon throughout his Service career. Janel arrived at the beginning of this year to begin her training and was able to see her brother celebrate the successful completion of his course during his passing-out-parade.{{more}}

A former pupil of Saint Vincent Community College, 22-year-old Shadale worked as a primary school teacher before joining the Royal Navy. He said: “I joined the Royal Navy to attain a career in engineering to better my life and to serve in a disciplined force. The course was very challenging but I will treasure my training and take it with me wherever I go.”

With the first phase of his training complete, Shadale is heading for HMS Sultan in Hampshire, England for five months professional training. Once he is qualified as an Engineering Technician he will be a specialist member of the team that keeps the ships of the Royal Navy running at the peak of operational effectiveness.

Janel, aged 20, who joined the Royal Navy for the travel and further education opportunities, is due to complete her initial training at the beginning of March. Her highlights of training so far have included swimming and running tests along with parade drill. After her initial course the former pupil of North Union Secondary School is due to remain at HMS Raleigh for twelve weeks professional training to qualify as a Royal Navy Steward. Her role onboard ship will be to provide official hospitality services and to carry out other key tasks which are necessary on a modern warship.

First commissioned as a training establishment for Ordinary Seaman in 1940, HMS Raleigh’s role has expanded over the years to include training in a range of specialist areas. Around 60 new recruits from the length and breath of the country and abroad come to HMS Raleigh each week to be transformed from civilians into sailors. The establishment also provides courses in submarine operations, logistics, weapons handling and seamanship for Royal Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary personnel as well as staff from defence and maritime related industries and Armed Forces personnel from overseas.

Details of career opportunities within the Royal Navy are available online at