More than 30 years after first being granted freedom of entry to the Western Australian port city of Fremantle, HMAS Success has repeated the feat on her last deployment before decommissioning later this year.
Success, the second Royal Australian Navy ship to bear the name, was commissioned in 1986, and has for the past 32 years has been supplying fuel and stores to both Royal Australian Navy and allied ships alike.
Based on the French Durance Class ship, Success is an Auxiliary Oiler Replenishment vessel, displacing 18,000 tonnes fully loaded – she was built at the Cockatoo Island Dockyard in New South Wales.
Commanding Officer Captain Darren Grogan said it was a great honour for his ship’s company to be granted Freedom of Entry to the City of Fremantle.
“The Royal Australian Navy has had a close relationship with Fremantle for many years,” he said.
“Dating back to Navy’s early days, we have always enjoyed a warm welcome from the people of Fremantle, and that reception is still very evident today.
“Given that Success was first granted Freedom of Entry to Fremantle at the beginning of her life, it seems appropriate that we are here once again on the ship’s decommissioning deployment.”
Hundreds of people lined Fremantle’s Market Street and South Terrace to witness the Freedom of Entry, a ceremony that dates back to medieval times.
Fremantle Mayor Dr Brad Pettitt said it was a great privilege to grant Freedom of Entry to the officers and sailors of HMAS Success, especially on the ship’s final ever visit to Fremantle.
Success, the largest ship built entirely in Australia for the Royal Australian Navy, will decommission when she returns to her homeport at Fleet Base East in the middle of this year.
The ship recently took part in Exercise OCEAN EXPLORER of the Western Australian coast, and will soon set sail for Sri Lanka with a number of other Royal Australian Navy ships for INDO PACIFIC ENDEAVOUR 2019.