A RETIRED submarine commander surfaced at Buckingham Palace to be presented with an honour for service to his country.

Lieutenant Commander Stuart Hobson, from Consett, in County Durham, collected an MBE announced during the Queen’s Birthday Honours.

The 55-year-old was given the award for his dedication to the UK’s continuous at sea deterrent and helping to promote relations between the Royal Navy and US Navy.

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After leaving Blackfyne Secondary School, Lieutenant Commander Hobson embarked on a 38-year career with the Royal Navy, serving on the Polaris submarines HMS Renown, HMS Repulse and HMS Resolution followed by tours with Vanguard submarines HMS Victorious and HMS Vengeance.

He ended his military career on shore as officer-in-charge of HMNB Clyde’s Strategic Weapons Support Building.

He said: "The investiture was a unique experience which made me and my wife very proud, yet humble. It made me feel that my 38-years before the mast was not in vain."

Since retirement, Mr Hobson has started a new career in the private sector with Lockheed Martin UK Strategic Systems.

Accompanying him to the Buckingham Palace ceremony were his wife, Wendy, and their three children, Chris, Nick and Emma.