HMS Edinburgh to Be Decommissioned Soon (UK)

HMS Edinburgh to Be Decommissioned Soon (UK)

Type-42 destroyer HMS Edinburgh is the last of her class and is being decommissioned later this month to make way for the brand new Type 45 destroyers, of which five are now in active Service.

Bowing out after three decades and with more than 793,500 miles of global operational service under her belt, the ship sailed into Ocean Terminal at 6am for a week-long celebration of her 30 year affiliation with Scotland’s capital city.

Affectionately known as The Fortress of the Sea, HMS Edinburgh’s final sojourn in her twinned city, Edinburgh, promises to be one of pageantry, poignancy and celebration of a close relationship which has meant much to the thousands of sailors who have served on board during that time, as well as to the cityfolk who have repeatedly welcomed her back to her spiritual home.

On Friday, members of the crew, at the invitation of Edinburgh City Council will exercise their Freedom of the City with a Privilege Parade through the city’s historic streets.

Starting out from Broad Pavement Car Park at Palace of Holyrood at 11am, the parade will march past the Scottish Parliament, up the Royal Mile and halt on High Street beside the Wellhead, where they will conduct ceremonial Divisions, a formal inspection by the Lord provost and FOSNNI.

They will then continue up the Mile with an official salute is taken by the Lord Provost, the Right Honourable Donald Wilson, in front of the City Chambers at 11.50am. The parade will finish in the Lawnmarket.

And the city will then further honour her long and strong relationship with the ship by hosting members of the crew at a special reception in the Chambers.

The pomp and ceremony, however, gives way to more informal hospitality on Saturday, as the ship throws open her gangway for the final time to the Edinburgh public from 11am to 5pm.

“There is no easy way to bid farewell to a strong affiliation like the one HMS Edinburgh has enjoyed with this most historic city,” said HMS Edinburgh’s Commanding Officer, Commander Nick Borbone.

“Scottish hospitality is legendary and throughout the three decades of service which this ship has given, the fondness shown to HMS Edinburgh by the city has grown stronger and stronger.

Such support cannot be underestimated and, while we will of course feel much sadness, it is also a time for celebration of this long relationship and the great service of this fine ship.

“We are absolutely honoured to be invited by Edinburgh City Council to exercise our Freedom of the City with a Privilege Parade on Friday and hope that local people will come out to support the ship’s company as it marches through the streets.

“And on Saturday from 11am to 5pm we look forward to repaying just some of the kindness and support we have had over many years by welcoming local people on board HMS Edinburgh for the final time. I know that my crew and I are particularly looking forward to meeting everyone.”

HMS Edinburgh will sail from Leith on Tuesday May 21 for the final time, leaving her berth at approximately 11am. She will then stop in at Liverpool before making her way home to Portsmouth on May 31.


Press Release, May 16, 2013