Nuclear submarine commander is sent home after he organised BBQ and disco to welcome sailors home… while being held in coronavirus isolation
- Party was held on to dockside after HMS Trenchant arrived back in Devonport
- Royal Navy submarine crew watched slightly bemused as DJ set played
- Commanding officer is being investigated over the incident and could lose job
- He has not been named due to security reasons but took control last year
- Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19
The commander of a Royal Navy nuclear submarine is under investigation for holding a BBQ and disco for his crew to welcome them home – before they had to self-isolate due to coronavirus.
Crew from the ‘hunter-killer’ sub HMS Trenchant held an impromptu party on the jetty alongside their boat at Devonport naval base after being at sea for two months.
The sub had just returned from manoeuvres with the mission starting before the UK was put on lockdown to stop the spread of Covid-19.
Despite effectively self-isolating underwater the 150 crew were told they had to do the same at home for a further two weeks.
The sub’s commander – who has not been named for security reasons – arranged the BBQ and disco as a morale booster before the crew left on shore leave.
A Royal Navy insider said the dockside party is one of several incidents under investigation.
The Commander faces being stripped of his command when appearing before a disciplinary hearing.
A Navy insider said the commander decided to hold the dockside party to cheer up his crew before they went home.
Footage of the mobile disco was posted to social media.
Many of the crew can seen looking on bewildered with their hands in their pockets as the disco blares out music.
Cooks in white overalls can be seen standing over a BBQ with the submarine in the background.
Footage of the mobile disco on HMS Trenchant (left) was posted to social media. Many of the crew can seen looking on bewildered with their hands in their pockets (right) as the disco blares out music.
An insider said: ‘The commanding officer decided that it would help cheer his men up after a long time at sea. He allowed them to hold a disco and BBQ.
‘It was his way of letting them blow of steam after weeks at sea where they had been self isolating anyway. They were told on their return they had to self isolate for a further two weeks.
‘Unfortunately, some people higher in command saw this as a lapse of judgement given that most of the UK has been in lockdown and not allowed to have BBQs. It wasn’t seen as the right choice to throw a BBQ.’
HMS Trenchant is one of three nuclear powered subs in the Navy’s arsenal.
The Trafalgar class submarine is equipped with Tomahawk cruise missile, which can destroy a target from up to 1,000 miles away.
Powered by a nuclear generator it can stay underwater for months with only food replenishment for the crew making it surface.
In 2018 the sub broke through the ice of the North Pole after a joint exercise with the US Navy.
One of the crew posed for a photo holding a cricket bat on the ice cap.
A Royal Navy spokesman said: ‘An investigation is underway. It would be inappropriate to comment further.’
HMS Trenchant is one of three nuclear powered subs in the Navy’s arsenal