Sailor from Northampton gets military award for exemplary service

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A Royal Navy sailor from Northampton has been presented with a prestigious military award, signifying thirty years of unblemished service.

Warrant Officer Keith Ashford, 47, currently works at HM Naval Base Clyde in Scotland, the home of the UK submarine service.

A maintenance engineer, Keith works with the Royal Navy’s Sandown Class mine hunters which are also based at the military site.

He has been presented with a clasp to his Long Service and Good Conduct Medal by Commodore Keith Beckett, Naval Base Commander Clyde, marking thirty years of exemplary naval service.

Mr Ashford said: “Receiving the clasp is a real honour. It marks a full career on a variety of Royal Navy ships.

“It’s strange to think that I have now served thirty years. My father, Colin, was in the RAF and I’ve now been with the Armed Forces longer than he was.”

Mr Ashford lives in Northampton with partner Dawn and two daughters, Claire-Louise and Katie.

Last year the sailor was awarded a Fleet Commander Commendation, presented for his work on board Type 23 frigate HMS Montrose in the Falklands.

After a colleague suffered an injury, Keith stepped into the breach to fulfil his responsibilities during a particularly busy period of inspections. The high standard of work led to the commendation.

Mr Ashford said: “I’ve enjoyed my thirty years, During my time I’ve visited the Caribbean many times, Sweden, Norway, Latvia and the Falklands.

“But my time would not have been as enjoyable without the close knit community of the Royal Navy and the strong support from my family.”