On Friday 8th May, 12 year old Sea Cadet Milo, will be celebrating the 75th anniversary of VE Day like his fellow shipmates, from TS ST. Vincent in Brentwood, at home. This week, the cadets will have been getting ready, making bunting, learning wartime songs and baking wartime recipes. Unlike most of his fellow cadets however, Milo and his family, will also be remembering his Great Grandfather, Sydney William Talley who served in the Royal Navy on HMS Hood during WWII.
Petty Officer Talley, had been stationed on HMS Hood, for some time when his Chief Petty Officer insisted that he take his overdue leave. This proved a very significant event, as shortly after leaving the ship, in May 1941, the British Hood and the battleship, Prince of Wales were given orders to make way to intercept the German battleship Bismarck and the heavy cruiser Prinz Eugen, who were heading towards the Atlantic to attack allied convoys. On 24th May, during the Battle of the Denmark Strait, the Hood came under heavy shelling from the Bismarck, causing a multitude of explosions on board, which tragically sunk the Hood within a few minutes. This catastrophic event, claimed a huge loss of life, with only 3 of the crew surviving.
HMS Hood, the last battlecruiser built for the Royal Navy, whose design had been revised after the Battle of Jutland in 1916, was believed to be invincible. PO Sydney Talley, who was on leave at the time,was always haunted by the death of his shipmates. In the years that followed however, Sydney went on to have a long and happy marriage to Sarah Talley, 3 sons, 4 grandchildren and Cadet Milo is one of 9 great grandchildren alive today.
Brentwood Sea Cadet Milo has recently spoken about his Great Grandfather Sydney, in a 75th Anniversary, VE Day Commemorative film for Brentwood Borough Council. The Brentwood Sea Cadets are continuing to train cadets and parade ‘virtually’ online. Last week the Commanding Officer, PO (SCC) Samantha Hayward, hosted an online meeting with the Captain of the Sea Cadets, Captain Phillip Russell RNR who enrolled 2 new cadets to TS St. Vincent.
The Sea Cadets is a national youth charity, offering a different kind of adventure for 10 to 18 year olds. The Brentwood Unit usually meet twice weekly on a Tuesday and Thursday evening, from 19.15hrs to 21.40hrs at TS St. Vincent, in King Edward Road, near Brentwood Rail Station, but are currently training online.
For more information and to get involved, please contact PO (SCC) Hayward; Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or via the ‘Brentwood Sea Cadet’ page on Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/seacadetsbrentwood/