The First WRNS To Serve At Sea As Members Of A Ship's Company ..........

sailed in the frigate HMS Brilliant on Operation Granby in January 1991, having joined the ship in October 1990.

20 years ago this month then.
The first Wren to go to sea as a member of a ships co. was a 2nd Officer WE on the Norfolk straight from build in '89. She was my last D.O.
I remember us having a little ceremony for her when she swapped her blue epaulettes for gold onesin early '90


Lantern Swinger
Funny enough I thought it was Beaver as well, I was on a Guzz boat at the time. Having never been a Skimmer I didn't really cum across wrens that much so when I first saw the seagoing wrens ashore behaving like Jack I was gobsmacked.

Was an LRO(G) on the Invince in Nov 90 when about 80 joined in one go - nightmare. The queue for breakfast the following morning was just a giggling heap of women, first went to sea with them not long after which proved entertaining too, first day at sea and one of the stokers messes purchased every sanitary product that the Colonel Gadaffi had to offer!


I always thought the first ships wrens served on was HMS Beaver,must be a dockyard myth!
The earliest report of a wren at sea I can find is the First Officer who perished with her ship HMS Fidelity D57 off the Azores January 1st 1942 with the loss of 325 lives. Fidelity was no ordinary warship however.
We may have served on her at the same time, I was ships Bugler in 1991/2 ish, on one of the Adriatic 'deployments'
Must have been after I left her Jan 93, was on her from Mar 90 - Jan 93 and never went to the Adriatic.... have some great camcorder stuff of the Royals and their displays/concerts etc.


First Officer Madeleine Barclay

Madeleine Barclay was the first ( or very near) the first wren to serve afloat
Madeleine was commissioned and attended a WRNS Officers' Course at RNC Greenwich in January1941. She served ashore until 1943 when she was drafted to HMS Fidelity as a French speaking specialist.
Madeleine, along with 300 odd others lost her life off the Azores at the hands of U-615 and U-435. A number of 40(RM) Commandos perished with her

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