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One of our Frigates - HMS IRON DUKE - Freedom of the City of Hull

Published: 08 Nov 2011

HMS Iron Duke sailors march through Hull city centre to receive freedom scroll. Hundreds lined the streets on Saturday 5th November 2011 to see the crew of Hull's adopted warship exercise their right to march through the city.

Despite being granted the Freedom of the City in 1994, the scroll and casket were only handed to HMS Iron Duke Commanding Officer, Commander Nick Cooke-Priest RN on Saturday.

Led by Hull Police Band, the parade marched through the city centre, past the war memorial, before stopping in Queen Victoria Square.

Here, the guard performed a general salute to Lord Mayor Colin Inglis, who inspected the ship's company and presented the Freedom of the City Scroll.

The crew, who have just returned from Libya, were joined by platoons from the Sea Cadet Corps and Hull Trinity House School.

Chief Petty Officer David McCormick trained the crew for the march and drills.

He said: "We started training for this two weeks ago.

"The morning of the parade was the first time we could get everyone together, but it went very well.

"Having the Hull Police Band lead us really helped and they were excellent.

"The crowd started clapping and cheering as we went by. All the crew felt very proud at that point.

"We've been delighted with the welcome. All the crew have thoroughly enjoyed the visit."

Mr Inglis said: "It has been a great show by everyone who took part and there was a brilliant turn out by the people of Hull.

"We have given them this hospitality to thank them for all their efforts.

"This will be the last time we will see the Iron Duke for some time as it is having a refit."

He was also delighted to finally hand over the scroll and casket.

Mr Inglis said: "Despite several visits since being granted Freedom of the City, the scroll and casket have never been handed over.

"The casket was made by Hull College student Anthony Cockerill, who has done a wonderful job."

Hull City Council leader Stephen Brady said: "It has been an absolutely fantastic weekend.

"It has been a really superb occasion and I have thoroughly enjoyed it."

The ship's weekend programme included welcoming local school children on board, a charity football match to raise funds for Help For Heroes and a children's pirate party on board for local foster children.

On Sunday the public was given the chance to have a tour.

Andrew Smith, who used to serve in the Navy some years ago, brought his partner Lorna, Dykes, their children Ethan, 6, and Archie, 5, and his sister Alison.

He said: "I used to serve in the Navy so it has been really good to show the children what it's all about.

"They have been on the bridge and have seen the big gun and where the missiles come from.

"They have really enjoyed it and it's fantastic to be able to come onboard. It is really good for Hull."

Bernie Bennison came on board with daughter Jane Dawes, her husband Oliver and their children Annabel, 3, and Sebastian, nine months.

Mr Bennison said: "It has been great and we have all really enjoyed it.

"It is brilliant to have a ship which is so supportive of the city.

"My grand daughter has really loved it.

Mrs Dawes added: "Curiosity brought us here. It must be amazing when the ship sees action.

"It has given us a real insight into what happens onboard."


Lord Mayor Colin Inglis meets the Commanding Officer and members of the Ship's Company and addresses the parade as the crew of HMS Iron Duke parade through Hull city centre.

Pictures by Kate Woolhouse and text from the Hull Daily Mail.


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