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Centenary Commemoration of the Sinking of Three Cruisers of the Chatham Division, 22nd September 2014

His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent KG GCMG GCVO ADC(P) unveils a plaque commemorating the loss of the three Royal Navy cruisers HMS ABOUKIR, HMS HOGUE and HMS CRESSY on the 22 September 1914. © David Nott

His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent KG GCMG GCVO ADC(P) unveils a plaque commemorating the loss of the three Royal Navy cruisers HMS ABOUKIR, HMS HOGUE and HMS CRESSY on the 22 September 1914. © David Nott

On Monday 22nd September 2014, His Royal Highness The Duke of Kent  was the Principal Guest at a Drumhead Service which formed part of The Historic Dockyard Chatham’s First World War Centenary commemorations. This nationally significant commemoration marked the loss of three Royal Navy Cruisers – HMS Aboukir, HMS Hogue and HMS Cressy – sunk by enemy submarine action on 22nd September 1914 off the Dutch coast in the North Sea with a total loss of life of 1,459 men – 1,264 of whom were from the Chatham Port Division.
The day’s commemorations commenced with a ceremonial Drumhead Service led by The Right Reverend Dr Stephen Venner DL with music provided by The Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines (CTCRM) Lympstone and a Royal Navy Guard on parade.

L to R – Mr Nicholas Marden (Private Secretary to HRH the Duke of Kent), Admiral Sir Ian Garnett KCB (Chairman of Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust), Admiral Sir George Zambellas KCB, DSC, ADC, DL (First Sea Lord) (obscured from view),  Lord Lieutenant of Kent the Viscount De L’Isle MBE, HRH the Duke of Kent KG GCMG GCVO ADC(P) with associated standard bearers. © Daniel Turner

L to R – Mr Nicholas Marden (Private Secretary to HRH the Duke of Kent), Admiral Sir Ian Garnett KCB (Chairman of Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust), Admiral Sir George Zambellas KCB, DSC, ADC, DL (First Sea Lord) (obscured from view), Lord Lieutenant of Kent the Viscount De L’Isle MBE, HRH the Duke of Kent KG GCMG GCVO ADC(P) with associated standard bearers. © Daniel Turner

HRH the Duke of Kent KG GCMG GCVO ADC(P) and Admiral Sir George Zambellas KCB, DSC, ADC, DL addressing Lieutenant Commander Steve Gilmore . © David Nott

HRH the Duke of Kent KG GCMG GCVO ADC(P) and Admiral Sir George Zambellas KCB, DSC, ADC, DL addressing Lieutenant Commander Steve Gilmore . © David Nott

Those attending included the Lord Lieutenant of Kent, the First Sea Lord, other senior Royal Navy and military officers, civic dignitaries from Kent and The Netherlands, members of the Live Bait Squadron Society and guests and families of those who have a direct connection with the action of 22 September 1914. Service Association Standards will also be taking part.
During the Service, The Duke of Kent unveiled a plaque commemorating the loss of the Three Cruisers. The Drumhead Service concluded with an Act of Remembrance during which the Mayor of Medway handed a poppy wreath to the Mayor of The Hague for laying at Dutch Commemorations on Wednesday 24th September. At the service’s conclusion the Last Post was played by Royal Marines buglers as 1,459 poppy petals (one for every life lost) fell.

 

 

 

 

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