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Clyde-based submariners get Royal reception at Edinburgh Tattoo

18 August 2017
A group of Royal Navy Submariners from HM Naval Base Clyde met His Royal Highness Prince William – the Duke of Cambridge - at the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo.

The Submariners were part of the Tattoo Support Group (TSG), working behind the scenes at the internationally renowned event to ensure that it runs smoothly. 

HRH Prince William, who is also Commodore-in-Chief Submarines, took time to speak with the Submariners in this, the Year of the Royal Navy.

“It was a great privilege to take command of the support group for the preparations and performance of the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo,” said Lieutenant Commander Griffiths, one the Submariners from HM Naval Base Clyde. 

“The Duke of Cambridge was delighted to meet the Royal Navy participants at the Tattoo,” he continued.  “We discussed the show’s context and how the theme reflected the arrival of HMS Queen Elizabeth in Portsmouth.

“It is our final week in Edinburgh and meeting the Duke was one of the highlights of this unique experience.”

It is our final week in Edinburgh and meeting the Duke was one of the highlights of this unique experience.

Lieutenant Commander Griffiths

In his role as Commodore-in-Chief Submarines, Prince William has a special connection with the Royal Navy Submarine Service.  In July last year, the Duke took the opportunity to visit Astute-Class submarine HMS Artful at sea where he presented 14 trainees with their dolphin badges – signifying their qualification as fully-fledged Submariners. 

The Duke also took the chance to tour the sophisticated attack submarine, learning about the high-tech systems on board as well as meeting personnel in the boat’s galley, control room and bunk spaces. 

The evening celebrated Scotland’s links to the Royal Navy, which is the military lead at this year’s Tattoo.  It served to highlight the country’s pivotal role in protecting the UK – whether through Scotland’s largest military base HM Naval Base Clyde; Scotland’s important role in constructing Royal Navy ships; or through the combat expertise of Arbroath-based Royal Marines from 45 Commando. 

As part of hosting party Rear Admiral John Weale, Flag Officer Scotland and Northern Ireland (FOSNI), said: “Not only does Scotland benefit from being part of the collective defence of the United Kingdom, but the UK benefits from the knowledge, dedication and professionalism of thousands of Scottish military and civilian personnel.

“The Clyde’s submarines, warships and Royal Marines contribute every day to defence and national security – providing continuous at sea deterrence, intelligence gathering, maritime security, training and support to international partners as well as a vibrant programme of STEM and innovation activity across Scotland.

“I am very glad that the Duke of Cambridge took the time to speak with some of our Submariners today and learn more about the valuable contribution they are making.”

Prince William was accompanying his father Prince Charles at the Edinburgh Tattoo where he took a royal salute from the Royal Navy Guard of Honour.  The pair also met the Clans and after a Gaelic Toast from a lone piper, took their seats in the Royal Gallery to enjoy the show.

The event was the first of six VIP evenings at the Tattoo, with First Sea Lord Sir Philip Jones and Flag Officer Scotland and Northern Ireland Rear Admiral John Weale welcoming the guests which also included US Navy Admiral Michelle Howard, Commander of the Canadian Royal Navy Vice Admiral Ron Lloyd, Scottish entrepreneur and philanthropist Sir Tom Hunter, Armed Forces Minister Mark Lancaster and Member of Scottish Parliament Keith Brown. 

The Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo is set to run until August 26.

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