Letters from Paul Innes [Heath 1980–1985]

A Potted History

I left the school in 1985 and trained as a chef for two years and did other odds and sods before deciding to join the Royal Marines in 1990.

In 1991 I transferred to the Royal navy and trained as a troop medic. I travelled the world and served with the Royal Marines in Belize, Brunei and Norway. In 1997 I trained as a Royal Navy Operating department Practitioner at the Royal Collage of Defence Medicine and since 1999 have served in operations in Kosovo, Afghanistan and Iraq.

I am now working (still in the navy) at the University of Central England in Birmingham as a lecturer, lecturing in Perioperative Practice, Surgery, anaesthetics and post-anaesthetic care and also run a communication module.

Paul Innes
Chief Petty Officer Medical Assistant.

What a Good Do! 2009 HOBA Reunion Dinner


I just wanted to write and thank you for the great time I had at the Heath Old Boys Association Annual Dinner.

For many years now I have heard, by word of mouth and via the newsletters, how well the event has gone, but have always been unable to attend due in part to apprehension and fear.

This year, having spoken with Craig Morley, I was able to make certain that my annual visit to Halifax coincided with the HOBA Annual Dinner. Having met earlier with Craig, who was upset that I still had hair, we arrived at the club.

As a Senior Rate in the Royal Navy I have attended many social and regimental type dinners where the cost is more often than not very high, the conversation conservative and stuffy and the entertainment wretched.

How striking then, that such a small ‘elite’ organisation as the HOBA was able to present a first-rate meal and incomparable entertainment for a meagre £17. I thought I had been well educated in the area of mess games until I was introduced to ‘Stand-up-sit-down-bingo,’ which I can assure you will in future be adopted by the Royal Marines and Royal Navy, ashore and afloat, and will become part of my own mess games repertoire.

It was fantastic to see and talk with so many old boys, faces familiar and new, and speak with a few of the old masters. Mr Edwards charmed us with his dreadful magic tricks, Mr Stansfield insisted he remembered us, Mr Eastwood, still the ‘Shane’ character of school myth and Mr Bunch, though a little greyer and a little thinner on top, now twenty five years on still fills me with admiration and still scares me a little. The brothers Stollery, whose contortions proved themselves worthy of inclusion in any HOBA history book (how did they do that?), were but one of many memories I will treasure.

Thanks to the Chairman and the General Committee for putting on such a good night as, without the time you all give over to the HOBA, I think perhaps we, ‘The Heath Old Boys’ would have disappeared into the ether.

I will in future try and ensure that the date of the HOBA is cleared in my diary.

Paul Innes
Chief Petty Officer Medical Assistant.
Navy Command Headquarters