A right Royal visit

This article has photo gallery Published on LEUT Andrew Ragless (author), ABIS Bonny Gassner (photographer)

Location(s): HMAS Albatross, HMAS Watson

Topic(s): HMAS Albatross, HMAS Watson, Fleet Base East, 808 Squadron, HMAS Hobart (D39)

His Royal Highness, Prince Andrew, Duke of York, KG, GCVO, CD, ADC(P) speaks with the ship's company of Guided Missile Destroyer, HMAS Hobart.  (photo: ABIS Bonny Gassner)
His Royal Highness, Prince Andrew, Duke of York, KG, GCVO, CD, ADC(P) speaks with the ship's company of Guided Missile Destroyer, HMAS Hobart.
His Royal Highness, Prince Andrew, the Duke of York had an important message for the men and women of the Royal Australian Navy during a recent visit to Australia.
 
Seizing an opportunity to visit units based in Sydney and Nowra, he encouraged officers and sailors alike to be proud of their accomplishments.
 
“It’s not always the case that you are thanked for the difficult work you do,” he said. 
“Sometimes by those who send you.
“But you should know that we are immensely grateful.”
 
Flying in one of 808 Squadron’s MRH-90 helicopter, the Duke of York travelled from Sydney to HMAS Albatross in Nowra where he met with members of the Fleet Air Arm.
 
The visit included a presentation on the Shark Tank Initiative, a series of forums designed to encourage innovation by Navy aviation personnel, in line with the entrepreneurial ethos of the Pitch@Palace program established by the Duke.
 
Able Seamen Aviation Technicians Avionics Brad Watson and Ben Price presented their idea for a Portable Breathing Apparatus to His Royal Highness.
 
“The apparatus is designed to provide the highest level of respiratory protection for personnel working with hazardous chemicals,” Able Seaman Watson said.
 
“At first it was a daunting prospect presenting to His Royal Highness, but after introductions, we felt comfortable and confident in answering his questions.
 
“It was a real honour.
 
“He said the idea was brilliant and it could be utilised not only within the Fleet Air Arm but across the wider Australian Defence Force.”
 
Following his visit to Albatross, the Duke returned to Sydney via one of 816 Squadron’s MH-60R helicopter to visit the Bridge Simulator at HMAS Watson, and the latest addition to the Australian fleet, guided missile destroyer HMAS Hobart, where he presented Australian Defence Medals and Long Service Medals to members of ship’s company.
 
Prior to departing in the Admiral’s Barge, the Duke posed for a photograph with ship’s company before delivering a final message.
 
“Keep doing what you do so well,” he said.
“And do it with dedication and fun!”