Identifying Environmental and Explosive Hazards on Wrecks

Event Date:
Start at 9:30 AM
December 4, 2021


This course will provide an introduction to identifying environmental and explosive hazards on wrecks. Participants will also gain a thorough understanding in how to appropriately respond to these identified hazards and how they can assist the MOD in mitigating these underwater threats. The course will outline desk-based and on-site assessments of wrecks with environmental and explosive threats and will go through several case-studies showing how the process works. There will also be the opportunity to get involved with an ongoing diving project on military protected wrecks.


Matt Skelhorn is the Wreck Manager, Salvage & Marine Operations, UK Ministry of Defence.
Polly Hill is the Wreck Environmental Scientist, Salvage & Marine Operations, UK Ministry of Defence

Several other experts will be teaching the course. Their names are still to be confirmed.


The course is aimed at individuals undertaking the NAS Training program, divers who have an interest in military wrecks and professional archaeologists working with military wrecks.

NAS members will receive 5 credits towards their Certificate or Award


A computer or tablet (phone screens are a bit small to look at for the whole day) with a good internet connection is essential. A built-in or external webcam and microphone are optional. A week before the course you will receive an invitation to the online course session which will be run through GoToMeeting. This is an online video conferencing programme that can be run directly through the internet or you get better connection if you download the small programme – it only takes a minute to do.

If you are concerned about your computer set up, please contact the organiser at for a test run before the course.


NAS members £40
Non-NAS members £80 (although as NAS membership starts at £12, you’re better off becoming a member and getting the discount rate immediately!)

Provisional Timetable in GMT

This course is a combination of 3 hours of pre-recorded video presentations and a live online session. This course delivery method will reduce screen fatigue through a shorter live online session and will also be more convenient for a greater range of time zones for our international participants.

The three hours of pre-recorded videos will become available throughout November and the live online session will take place on Saturday 4 December 2021 between 9:30am and 1pm GMT.

Saturday 4 December 2021

9:30 Log on, online etiquette and introductions – Claire Hallybone

9:40 Insiders guide to researching wrecks – Matt Skelhorn

10:10 Assessing environmental risks without leaving home – Polly Hill

10:30 Assessing wreck integrity underwater – Matt Skelhorn

11:00 Practical exercise – assessing the integrity of RFA War Mehtar

12:00 Assessing environmental risks underwater – Polly Hill

12:20 Summary and questions – Matt Skelhorn

12:30 NAS MOD diving project and how to get involved – Claire Hallybone

13:00 Course finish