A funny thing happened ….. our first supporter Posted February 27, 2006 by Adrian Nance


A supporter can  join in the strangest way!

In his routine work as the boss of the large naval training establishment HMS COLLINGWOOD, one of his 1500 staff came for a retirement interview.    As a result of this informal chat with Andrew Thomson, Adrian Nance was introduced to the Chairman of Heli-Charter, Ken Wills.

Our first supporter

Ken Wills has been a key part in allowing us to make such an amazing start in this work.  Also Heli-Charter has been a great supporter of our work over the last years, providing engineering advice and helping us steer through the recession.  We are so grateful to Ken and his family and to his staff for their advice and encouragement.

Ken and the team at Heli-Charter are the first of many friends and supporters.  Thank you!


During Adrian Nance’s tenure, HMS COLLINGWOOD trained about 25,000 people per year and was the home of the operations and the weapons engineering branches of the Royal Navy.  HMS COLLINGWOOD also was the lead establishment of the Maritime Warfare School.  The MWS was made up of 8 constituent schools including leadership, firefighting, survey and diving . Its staff of 1500 were supported by a budget of £110 m (US $ 165 m) per year.  He was in command there for 2 years, and he retired after 33 years in the Royal Navy from there in 2006.

In our recent experience, a good supporter is more important than knowledge!