The Anzac Peace Park, located on the shores of Princess Royal Harbour, staged the perfect location for the Ceremonial Sunset as part of the Centenary of Anzac commemorations in Albany, Western Australia.
Pelicans took flight as the beating from the drums of the Royal Australian Navy band echoed across King George Sound. The ‘Beat to Quarters’ originated from when ships’ drums were used as a call for the crew to man their quarters, or action stations, when battle was imminent.
Ceremonial Sunset is the oldest of Naval ceremonies, dating back centuries to the age of sail and on this occasion introduced a weekend of activity of remembrance of the original ANZACs and all those who served over the last 100 years.
As the day drew to a close, crowds that had gathered in Albany moved down to the Anzac Peace Park to witness the maritime ritual.
The Royal Australian Navy Band performed for the crowd concluding with the national anthems of both New Zealand and Australia signifying the link between the two nations which is embodied in the ANZAC spirit. The lowering of the Australian White Ensign followed shortly as the sunset over Princess Royal Harbour.
Having the opportunity to lead the HMAS Stirling guard made the event particularly special for Lieutenant Adrian Eddy.
“It is a real honour to lead the guard on what is an important ceremony for Navy and a great way to show the Albany community the detail and precision required of our sailors when marching in a naval guard,” Lieutenant Eddy said.
The Ceremonial Sunset preceded a lighting and pyrotechnics display, illuminating the waters around the Albany Entertainment Centre precinct.
“The ceremony was a great way to start a weekend of commemorating the leaving of the ANZACs from our shore 100 years ago,” Lieutenant Eddy said.
The Albany Convoy Commemorative Event is the first major Australian-based activity for the Centenary of Anzac runs all weekend.