Coroner Derek Winter returned a narrative verdict today (Tuesday, March 24, 2009).

Brenda Gooch, Anthony’s mother said: “On March 21, 2007 we lost a most cherished son. Anthony was a vibrant young lad, who at only 20-years-old had a promising future ahead of him but his life was wrongly taken away from him. He is sorely missed and leaves a huge void in our lives.

"In our opinion the coroner's verdict is a miscarriage of justice. We believe the disregard shown by the MoD and its contractors towards the safety of our son can only lead to the judgment that he was unlawfully killed.

"Two young men died because the Royal Navy failed in its duty of care. The complacency shown across the whole chain of acquisition, storage and handling is unforgivable. At times during the past six weeks of this inquest we have listened to witnesses speaking of the unbelievable contempt with which submariners have been treated.

"When will this Government and the MoD realise they are not above the law. The safety of all forces personnel must be paramount at all times, regardless of whether they are in 'war situations' or undertaking 'peace-time operations'."

Statement by Andrew McDonald from Thompsons Solicitors

“In light of the findings of this inquest and in light of the verdicts, the families hope and expectation is that the Navy and all interested parties will study and act upon the recommendations. This tragedy calls for nothing less than a complete review of safety within the Navy with specific emphasis on logistics, loading, stowage and storage of supplies of all classifications.

“Anthony and Paul’s lives were cut short in such a terrible manner. The families’ pain will never go but these young men and their families are owed the comfort of knowing that all the lessons that can be learned from this tragedy are learned so that the families of other submariners do not need to endure what they have faced and continue to live through.

More indepth information about the inquest is available from Thompsons Solicitors press office.

Read more about Your Legal Rights as an Injured Member of the Armed Forces.