School of Navigation - 1950-1965March 1950: Due to the increasing numbers of students requiring the Ministry of Transport examinations, the MOT exam centre in Southampton was re-opened having been closed since the mid 1930's.
1951: Due to rising costs, the local Education authorities asked the Ministry of Education to increase its grant but this was refused. To cut costs, it was decided to abandon the air navigation courses as the student numbers had fallen from 90 a year in 1940 to 40 in 1950.
July 1957: The first phase of a building programme was started on the Warsash site, these buildings were to modernise the School, not to increase the student body. They were to include three residential blocks, a teaching block, library and lecture/drama theatre, refectory and workshops. During the immediate post war years, Cadets had been employed in developing the grounds. This included demolishing a number of wartime buildings, air raid shelters and Nissen huts. They also built some of the paths and roadways through the grounds and cleared some of the marshy ground to make ponds as well as other landscape work. A deal of this work had been performed by Cadets working off punishment "Overtime"!
Jan 1960: Sir Nicholas Cayzer, President of the Chamber of Shipping laid a foundation stone for the cadet residential block and a 'time capsule' was placed under the stone.
September 1962: A mid Apprentice release course was started. It had been felt for many years that there was a need for Cadets to have a period of College instruction during their Cadetship not only for their studies, but to widen their interests. Activities such as trips to the opera at Glyndbourne and ski trips to Switzerland were included.
1963: Hamblemeads' a private Hotel adjacent to the School was purchased for use as a domestic staff hostel.
September 1965: An Ordinary National Diploma Cadet Training Scheme was started; this was a sandwich course for 'A' Level entrants which enabled them to gain a nationally recognised qualification whilst studying for their professional examinations. A joint Engineering Cadet Scheme was also started as it had been long recognised that there would be many advantages from training both disciplines, deck and engine, together rather than separately. The course was organised so that the Engineering Cadets resided at the School of Navigation and did some common studies with the Deck Cadets, though the engineering studies were done at the then Southampton College of Technology.
1965 also saw the first shipping company to sponsor deck cadets for pre sea training. Up until that time, all Cadets pre-sea training had been paid for by their parents though there had been a few scholarships. Also in 1965, the freehold of the Warsash Campus site was purchased by the University.