Royal Navy University challenge for Birmingham students

Posted by vm64 at Feb 25, 2011 11:50 AM |
University students in a challenging sports competition
Royal Navy University challenge for Birmingham students

The Birmingham team (in black) in action against Sussex on the rugby field. Credit: Dave Sherfield

Issued by Royal Navy on 23 February 2011

Members of the Birmingham University Royal Navy Unit (URNUs) have taken eighth place overall in a sports competition held at HMS Raleigh in Cornwall.

The Birmingham unit was one of 14 URNUs that took part in the competition held at the Royal Navy training establishment.  The unit is based at HMS Forward, the Royal Naval Reserve unit in the heart of Birmingham and draws its members from nine Universities; Birmingham, Birmingham City, Aston, Warwick, Coventry, Loughborough, Leicester, De Montfort (Leicester) and Wolverhampton.

Each URNU fielded a hockey, rugby, netball and bucket ball team. The competition included an obstacle course run with the team with the fastest time being declared the winners of the event.  Two members of each URNU also took part in a rowing challenge, rowing 10 minutes each on a rowing machine. The winners were the team that rowed the furthest.  

Birmingham URNU took the top spot in the Rugby 7s competition and were runners-up in the Hockey.  

Lieutenant Mark Hayes, the Commanding Officer of the Birmingham URNU, said: "I’m delighted with how the students performed this weekend, everyone of them giving it their all.  This is our best result at the sports weekend for a good number of years and to come away with a trophy and runner’s up medal from the six events is good news for the Unit”. 

The purpose of the sports weekend was to promote healthy sporting competition between the URNUs and to give the students the opportunity to experience life in a busy naval environment. 

Commodore Jake Moores, Commodore Britannia Royal Naval College, who has overall responsibility for the URNU, said:  "Commitment, courage and discipline are among the Royal Navy's core values.  Team work and good leadership is vital not only to success in the Royal Navy, but also in other walks of life.  All these qualities were on display over the weekend and I hope that taking part in this event will help the students in their future careers whether that is in the Royal Navy or in another vocation."

URNUs support the countries' leading Universities in England, Wales and Scotland and consist of 51 undergraduates who each join as Royal Navy Reservists for their three years at University.  Units aim to give students an awareness of career opportunities and also to inform society's future leaders and opinion formers about the Service, its role and purpose.  Training is conducted one evening a week in shore units at or near the University and at sea, over the weekends and during the vacations, by a dedicated Archer Class P2000 20 metre Patrol craft.  

In recent years the Birmingham URNU has deployed as far north as Scotland and as far east as the Netherlands.  This year they will deploy to France visiting harbours along the Normandy and Brittany coast line on board the Unit's patrol vessel HMS Exploit.

HMS Raleigh is the Royal Navy's largest training establishment in the South West and is located in South East Cornwall.  The sports weekend was arranged by URNU staff in conjunction with HMS Raleigh's PT department.

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