A FORMER Middlesbrough trainee goalkeeper has sailed through his training at HMS Collingwood to qualify as a mine warfare specialist.

Able Rate (Mine Warfare) Simon Parker, 19 from Ingleby Barwick, graduated after he completed his Phase 2 training, with Victory Squadron.

The former All Saints Secondary School pupil, who joined the Royal Navy in December last year, said “I have enjoyed my time so far and wish to better myself in the future. I can’t wait to see the different parts of the world on my first deployment.”

While on course, the former Middlesbrough FC Academy goalkeeper supported HMS Collingwood’s annual open day and represented the Navy in the contingent that attended the unveiling of the National Arboretum in Stafford.

During his 14 week course Simon was trained in the specialist areas of mine warfare, including the various types of mines, how they operate and how they’re used in war including disposal.

He also learnt how to detect mines and minefields using mine-hunting sonar and how to launch and operate the remote-controlled mine-disposal vehicle.

After successfully completing the course, he now joins the Mine Counter Measure Squadron in Faslane where he’ll wait to join his first ship.

HMS Collingwood, based in Fareham, Hampshire, is the home of the Maritime Warfare School which provides training to all officers and ratings of the Royal Navy.