The flight deck of HMAS Adelaide, with Sydney Harbour as the backdrop, provided a spectacular setting for Fleet Base East Divisions on 24 March.
The Royal Australian Navy Band and Guard marched onto the deck, followed by 600 Navy personnel from five warships home ported to Garden Island, Sydney.
Governor-General, His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove, AK, MC (Retd) and Commander Australian Fleet Rear Admiral Stuart Mayer inspected the platoons.
Command Warrant Officer - Fleet Command Stephen Downey said the ceremony underpinned what it means to be in the military
“Divisions are an important part of being in the Navy," Warrant Officer Downey said.
"The tradition forms the foundations of our values.
"We take part to show our discipline and pride in our unit, our uniform and each other.”
HMA Ships Kuttabul, Adelaide, Success, Melbourne, Warramunga and Newcastle took part in the ceremony.
Following the parade, the Governor-General presented Melbourne’s ship’s company with the 2015 Gloucester Cup, awarded annually to the unit, crew, squadron, clearance diving team or establishment which has excelled in all aspects of operations, safety, reliability and training.
Commanding Officer Melbourne, Commander Bill Waters accepted the award.
“In 2015 we prepared for and deployed on a seven-month mission to the Middle East region as part of Operation MANITOU,” Commander Waters said.
"We executed a number of successful narcotics interdiction to reduce funding for terrorism.
“While we were effective in conducting the maritime security role for which we were tasked, our real success came from the hard work of the ship’s company.
"They supported and motivated each other to achieve the highest possible standards under relentless assessments and prolonged periods of high intensity operations."
He spoke of his crew's camaraderie and professionalism and described commanding them a "privilege to observe and an honour to be a part of".
“Our deepest gratitude goes to the families as they shared all our successes and challenges and coped without us for much of the year.
"There are simply no words that can describe our feeling of thanks and appreciation. We simply could not have done it without them,” Commander Waters said.
Melbourne was deployed to the Middle East late last year. While away she confiscated and destroyed almost one tonne of high grade heroin with a street value of $390 million.
Terrorists use the proceeds of heroin sales to fund their activities.
Melbourne patrolled more than 37,000 nautical miles conducted 50 boarding operations and her embarked Seahawk flew 350 hours.
A five-point gold star will be placed on each side of Melbourne’s bridge to signify her as the holder of the Gloucester Cup.
More images are available at the Navy Image Gallery