Professor Dominic Tweddle, former Director General of the National Museum of the Royal Navy, has been appointed as Chairman of the Wellington Trust, effective from 1 July 2024.

HMS Wellington is the last surviving Grimsby Class sloop and is the last survivor of the Battle of the Atlantic, the longest battle of the Second World War.  She was built in Devonport as a 1200-ton Grimsby Class Sloop in 1934 for Service in New Zealand and the South Pacific. She was recalled to the UK in September 1939 and spent most of the Second World War conducting Battle of the Atlantic convoy duties and is credited with completing 103 convoys.  She is also credited with rescuing over 400 lives and participating in Operation Torch and Operation Cycle.

HMS Wellington has been a well-known riverscape icon on the Thames since her arrival in December 1948 by the Honourable Company of Master Mariners (HCMM). 

Alastair Chapman, the outgoing Chairman, is handing over leadership of the Trust after four years of dedicated service during the Trust’s most turbulent and uncertain period since its establishment in 2005.  As Vice Chairman, Alastair stepped into the role of Acting Chairman in February 2020 following a tragic accident suffered by the Chairman, Captain Guy Brocklebank Royal Navy.  He was appointed Chairman, in July of that year, following Guy’s untimely death. 

 Alastair has since steered the Trust through the pandemic and the challenges with which this presented the Board and, more recently, the departure of the Honourable Company of Master Mariners (HCMM).  He has devoted countless hours and effort to securing the future of Wellington, without which she could be facing an unthinkable future.  Alastair is also retiring as a Trustee after 11 years of loyal service. 

As he hands over the helm to Dominic Tweddle, Alastair reflects: “Wellington is much more than a warship with a remarkable history. Wellington represents a constant reminder of the continued importance, and the permanent challenge, of maintaining a naval presence to safeguard free trade and safe passage around the shores of our island nation, and throughout the world. It has been a privilege to have served her as both a trustee and Chairman of the Wellington Trust.

New Chairman Dominic thanked Alastair:

 “I would like to pay tribute to Alastair’s dedicated and effective work as a Trustee for eleven years, and as Chairman for the last four years.  He has expertly shared the Wellington Trust through a very difficult period in her history, and I have a tough act to follow. However, I know Alastair has a deep passion for Wellington and this is less of a farewell, as I know we will see him back onboard as a loyal and ever-present Friend of the Wellington, and as an Ambassador for the Wellington Trust.  My sincere thanks to Alastair for his service to Wellington”.

Dominic is also the Campaign Director for the 90th anniversary campaign Wellington@90.  All funds raised will both support HMS Wellington’s conservation and preservation and develop a new business plan to make her more accessible to the public as a visitor attraction.

Members of the public can donate to the Wellington@90 campaign by either:

Visiting the website:

 or contributing to the GoFundMe campaign:

 Follow The Wellington Trust on FacebookInstagram or Linkedin.

Source: Press release

Photo: Professor Dominic Tweddle (left) and Alastair Chapman


Dominic Tweddle and Alastarir Chapman Zone South East