Swaledale sailor’s pride at taking Her Majesty on final journey

Sacha is pictured fourth from right on the nearest line of sailors.

A Richmondshire sailor has spoken of her pride at helping to pull the carriage that took Queen Elizabeth II on her final journey.

Sacha Bellwood, 20, from Swaledale, who attended Richmond School and Sixth Form, was part of the gun carriage crew at Her Majesty’s state funeral on Monday.

Sacha said: “It was an unbelievable honour. When our class was selected for ceremonial duties, I never imagined I would be part of the team.

“I was one of 14 women sailors who are the first ever to pull the carriage – we’ve made history.”

Sacha joined the Royal Navy in March and after completing her phase one training at HMS Raleigh in Plymouth she was passed for duty on May 27.

Sacha is currently studying for her specialist trade at Portsmouth which she will finish in December.

She has chosen to study warfare and has been given the division of electronic warfare.

Sacha added: “My initial training was really tough and the trade I am studying now is really technical, but I’ve made amazing friends and we all help each other.

“I knew I didn’t want to go to university but I did know I wanted to see the world and work at the same time.

“The Royal Navy has given me so many opportunities already – I know I made the right decision joining up.”