Amazing crowds for HMAS Cerberus Open Day

Published on SBLT Kat Mulheron (author), ABIS Cassie McBride (author)

Location(s): HMAS Cerberus, VIC

Topic(s): HMAS Cerberus, Open Day

Members of the Boatswain Facility demonstrate replenishment at sea to visitors of the HMAS Cerberus Open Day. (photo: ABIS Cassie McBride)
Members of the Boatswain Facility demonstrate replenishment at sea to visitors of the HMAS Cerberus Open Day.

HMAS Cerberus opened its gates for the 2013 iteration of the base's biennial Open Day on the weekend, and the ship’s company was amazed by the number of people passing through. A record 15,000 visitors attended the six hour open day, to see the largest Tri-Service Military event held in Victoria.

HMAS Cerberus, often referred to as the ‘Cradle of the Navy’ provides training for Navy, Army and Air Force personnel. With a staff of up to 800, Cerberus trains about 4000 Defence members annually, averaging 1500 trainees onboard at any one time. With training offered for all three services it was a great opportunity for Army and Air Force to also put on a good show for the crowd.

Commanding Officer HMAS Cerberus, Captain Katherine Richards said there were plenty of military activities to see and participate in, including interactive displays by Navy Clearance Divers and cooking demonstrations by Navy and Army Cooks.

“Our emphasis is to train our men and women to the highest of professional standards and to have them leave here well prepared to be part of the Navy and Australian Defence Force. They’re terrific people who make up today’s Navy, Army and Air Force,” CAPT Richards said.

“Open Days are a great opportunity for members of the public to see the range of training we offer and to chat with officers and sailors about military life. It’s a great chance to see first hand how the men and women of the Navy and the wider ADF train to defend our nation.”

The Open Day saw 12 training faculties opened for inspection, popular displays from the RAAF Military Working Dogs and mock battles by Army’s Logistic Training Centre, while Navy’s 816 Squadron showcased water rescue techniques by conducting wet winching evolutions. Navy’s 723 Squadron and Army’s 173 Squadron also opened their cockpits to the public.

The crowds thoroughly enjoyed the impressive aviation display, complimented by the local aero club showing off vintage aircraft, and it seemed that being a pilot is the new career of choice.

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