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HMS Montrose remembers the Fallen across the country

HMS Montrose remembers the Fallen
13 November 2017
HMS Montrose played her part in two simultaneous events, 615 miles apart, over the Remembrance weekend.

A small party departed the ship on Thursday 9 Nov in order to undertake the 10 hour drive to the ship’s ‘home town’ of Montrose in the County of Angus, attending a dinner hosted by the local Royal British Legion (RBL) on the Friday night followed by the laying of a wreath at the local war memorial on Armistice Day.

Lieutenant Dave Salberg Royal Navy (the Deputy Weapon Engineer Officer) and Lieutenant James Young Royal Navy (Officer of the Watch 1) then led the 2 minutes silence at the Montrose Football game later in the afternoon.

On Sunday 12th November at HMS Montrose’s other affiliated town of Fowey, seven members of the Ship’s Company attended their Remembrance Day service.

The team were impeccable and it was a stand out performance by the Senior Service

Lieutenant Bowden, HMS Montrose

Whilst Cornishman Lieutenant Bowden (Officer of the Watch 4) liaised with the local British Legion, the team leapt into leading roles for the commemorative event.

Able Seaman Claire Start was asked to be the flag bearer at the front of the procession representing Women in the Armed Forces, and Able Seaman Grant Mitchell laid the wreath on behalf of the ship in front of the assembled crown. 

Lieutenant Bowden said, “All in all, it has been a very good day representing the ship. The team were impeccable and it was a stand out performance by the Senior Service; we were the only current serving members of the armed forces in attendance.” 

On completion of the service, the team met the Mayor of Fowey, Ruth Findlay, Sally Vincent from the RBL, as well as the town Reverend and Deputy Mayor.

Meanwhile the party in Scotland divided to represent the ship at both the Montrose Remembrance Day service and the County of Angus’s service in Forfar. 

Lt Salberg said, “Myself and James were very proud to volunteer to come up to Angus and represent our ship. The Remembrance weekend is not just an act of remembering those that paid the ultimate sacrifice but also the many people who were injured, both military and civilian. Their suffering should be seen as a gift that previous generations have given us so that we can live the life that we have today.”

The rest of the Ship’s Company represented the Royal Navy at local Remembrance ceremonies across the country. 

The ship's Weapon Engineer Officer, Lieutenant Commander Chris Andrews Royal Navy, found that his local grave yard in the West Midlands contained the final resting place of Lt Cdr Arthur Lane who died whilst on board HMS Assistance on 8 November 1918. Lt Cdr Lane’s parents had then paid to have his body repatriated to the family vault.

Lt Cdr Andrews said, “by using the Commonwealth War Graves Commissions website I was able to search the local area for any graves that they looked after. Not having any military hospitals or units in the area, I was surprised that a Lt Cdr from the First World War was buried such a short walk from my house. Since then I have been back on Remembrance Sunday to pay my respects and leave a poppy on his grave”.

HMS Montrose is currently alongside in Devonport whilst the engineers on board have a short period to conduct maintenance and defect rectification. 

Following her recent major refit, she will be re-dedicated to the Fleet at a ceremony on 23 November 2017, with the Duke of Montrose attending as the Guest of Honour. 

The ship will then return to sea to continue preparations for Operational Sea Training next year.

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