Skip to content
Recruiting now.Explore navy careers

Royal Navy sailors receive honours for services at Queen Elizabeth II’s funeral

His Majesty the King presents Royal Victorian Order honours to around 150 Royal Naval personnel who took part in Queen Elizabeth II's funeral. Picture: Petty Officer Joel Rouse
30 May 2023
Topic:
His Majesty The King has personally honoured the sailors and Royal Marines involved in the funeral of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

At Windsor Castle today (Tuesday, May 30) 142 men and women of all ranks and branches had the Royal Victorian Order or the Royal Victorian Medal (silver) presented to them by HM The King.

It comes after their role drawing the State Gun Carriage which carried Her late Majesty’s coffin and for their services at the state funeral of Queen Elizabeth II last September.

In total, 132 junior rates, three chief petty officers, one warrant office and three officers from a range of ships, establishments and units were given the medal at Windsor Castle.

On the day of the funeral, some 98 sailors pulled the State Ceremonial Gun Carriage with another 40 marching behind the vehicle acting as brakes.

Commodore Catherine Jordan, head of culture at the Royal Navy and the most senior officer to take part in the funeral, said: “It was a tremendous honour for us all to play a part in Her Late Majesty’s funeral last September and we were very proud to represent our Service and Defence at such a significant and important event.

“Since that momentous occasion we have all returned to operations, training or other employment and it’s been great to get together again, with our families, and a further honour to be presented our Royal Victorian Order medals personally by His Majesty King Charles III today.

“There were so many others who worked tirelessly behind the scenes to get us ready for the funeral and in the right place doing the right thing for which we are also grateful. Our people are our greatest asset and their performance and this special recognition by His Majesty is wonderful.”

Our people are our greatest asset and their performance and this special recognition by His Majesty is wonderful

Commodore Catherine Jordan

Commander Nicola Cripps was one of the officers of the gun carriage and was also made a member of the RVO. She added: “As the funeral cortege passed through the crowds fell silent, and the connection between people became very apparent.

“Individuals would reach out and touch each other as they saw the gun carriage pass, so it meant as a group, as a body of men and women, we were really united in that unique experience of taking the Queen to her final resting place.”

Rear Admiral Jude Terry, Director People and Training – and the Naval Officer responsible for the Royal Navy’s involvement in Operation Bridge ­– said no-one who took part in last September’s ceremonies would ever forget them.

“I look back with enormous pride and reflect on how impressed I was by the activities of the whole team who delivered across so many roles for this event,” she added.

“To see so many different personnel from such diverse backgrounds, across all ranks, units and branches come together from the four corners of the UK to support activities surrounding the funeral was truly inspiring.

“It is humbling that these amazing ambassadors who were at the forefront of the Royal Navy’s contribution have been subsequently honoured by His Majesty.”

Royal Victorian Order honours are in the Monarch’s personal gift, awarded for service to the Royal Family.

 

Related articles

Navy News Magazine

We bring you the latest news, features and award-winning photographs from the front-line. Navy News has been reporting on all that happens in the Royal Navy and its wider community since 1954.