CULDROSE REMEMBERS NELSON AT MADRON PARADE
Parading through the ancient streets of Madron in West Cornwall, personnel from Royal Naval Air Station Culdrose joined villagers in remembering Nelson at a very special Thanksgiving Memorial Service, 212 years after his death.
The service, held annually commemorates Admiral Lord Nelson’s victory over a combined French and Spanish Fleet at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805.
On her way home from the Battle of Trafalgar, HMS Pickle passed the news of the victory and the death of Lord Nelson to Cornish fishermen far out in Mounts Bay. They promptly returned to port and spread the news. Shortly afterwards, the Mayor and Burgesses arranged a memorial service where the ‘Nelson Banner’, which was hastily prepared to mourn the death of Nelson, was paraded for the first time. The Banner is now kept in Madron Parish Church and paraded each year at a memorial service to his “Immortal Memory’. This year it was carried by Penzance Sea Cadet Kaytlin Terry.
For many years a similar service was held to mark this occasion, but in 1946 the tradition of holding an annual Commemoration involving the Royal Navy was started by Reverend Michael Hocking, a former Naval Captain and the Parish vicar of Madron at the time.
Upholding this tradition and playing a central part in the day, RNAS Culdrose personnel marched on completion of the packed Church service. At the head of the parade was HMS Seahawk Volunteer Band followed by platoons of sailors from Culdrose, Sea Cadets, the Royal Naval Association and other Veterans groups from the region.
The Parade Commander, Lieutenant Lee Godwin Royal Navy said ‘ it was a great privilege to be part of such an historic event and to be so very well received by the community of Madron’. Petty Officer Colin ‘Buster’ Brown of Culdrose was the Naval Colour Bearer. He also felt proud to be representing the Royal Navy, ‘it was great to hear the applause from the locals and to be thanked for parading, it was a real honour.’
The Parade was very well received with applause and words of gratitude from the locals of Madron. They commented on how smart the sailors looked and what an honour it was to have them as part of the Parade. The Commanding Officer of RNAS Culdrose, Captain Danny Captain Dan Stembridge ADC, and his wife were also present. They too felt privileged to be there and appreciated the smart turn out of the Royal Naval personnel.