HMS Edinburgh’s Crew Marches through Scotland’s Capital
Hundreds of people paid tribute to the crew of HMS Edinburgh as they exercised their Freedom of the City, with a parade on the historic Royal Mile in Scotland’s capital city.
Waved on by wellwishers, the 260-strong ship’s company made a poignant but celebratory progression through Edinburgh while being led by the Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines Scotland.
Starting from the Palace of Holyrood, the parade passed the Scottish Parliament Building before making the gradual climb up the hill, halting at the Mercat Cross beside St Giles Cathedral.
A salute was then taken at the City Chambers by Edinburgh’s Lord Provost the Right Honourable Donald Wilson and the Royal Navy’s most senior Naval Officer in Scotland, Rear Admiral Chris Hockley, Flag Officer Scotland, Northern England and Northern Ireland.
HMS Edinburgh’s Commanding Officer Commander Nick Borbone said:
“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.”
HMS Edinburgh is the last in her class of Type-42 destroyers and will be decommissioned from Service next month.
The aging Type-42s have been following a programme of decommissioning to make way for the brand new state-of-the-art Type 45 destroyers of which five out of six are now in Service.
HMS Edinburgh is on her farewell tour of the UK with her next stop in Liverpool over the Bank Holiday weekend to continue with the 70th anniversary of the Battle of the Atlantic commemorations.
She will return home to Portsmouth Naval Base at the end of the month before finally decommissioning on the 6th June, marking the end of her 28 years’ service with the Royal Navy.
Press Release, May 21, 2013; Image: Royal Navy