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Royal Navy frigate company heading for Chatham Historic Dockyard to help celebrate 70th anniversary of HMS Cavalier

19 March 2014

Chatham is to have some special guests next month, it has been announced.

The ship's company from the Royal Navy frigate HMS Lancaster are to arrive to join the 70th anniversary of the launch of HMS Cavalier.

Cavalier is one of the star attractions at the tourist attraction and will be honoured on April 5 with celebrations organised by the HMS Cavalier Association and supported by the Royal Navy.

HMS Cavalier at Chatham Historic Dockyard

HMS Cavalier at Chatham Historic Dockyard

Together with an impressive and emotive bronze monument on the dockside, unveiled by the Duke of Edinburgh in 2007, HMS Cavalier is the National Destroyer Memorial to the 142 British destroyers and 11,000 men lost at sea during the Second World War. 

HMS Cavalier was launched on  April 7 1944 as one of 96 emergency destroyers ordered for the war effort between 1940 and 1942.  When she completed service in Chatham in 1972, HMS Cavalier was the Royal Navy’s last surviving Second World War destroyer.  

The day commences with a private Celebratory Drumhead Service at 1130 hours in the Royal Dockyard Church attended by HMS Cavalier Association members and invited guests including serving and former senior Royal Naval officers, the Mayor of Medway, The High Sheriff of Kent, The Lord Lieutenant for Kent and guest of honour Admiral The Lord Boyce Lord Warden and Admiral of the Cinque Ports. 

The service will be led by the Rev Andrew Huckett, Chaplain of the HMS Cavalier Association and a small ensemble for the Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marine (Collingwood) will provide the musical accompaniment for the Hymns.

Following the church service the Band of HM Royal Marines will lead a parade through The Historic Dockyard, which will include Service Association standards, a Royal Navy Guard formed by members of the ship’s company of HMS Lancaster and contingents of HMS Cavalier Association members, Sea Cadets and others. 

The salute will be taken by Admiral the Lord Boyce as the parade passes HMS Cavalier.  An ‘Up-Spirits’ toast to the ship will be made with a tot of rum by parade participants, led by the Association members and a broadside firing of HMS Cavalier’s guns will draw the formal proceedings to a close.

Normal admission prices apply for visitors to The Historic Dockyard on this day with special arrangements for participants in the formalities of the celebration.  Group admission prices available for groups of 15 or more.  Information can be found at

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