Today, The Duke of York visited HMAS Stirling on Garden Island off the coast of Rockingham in Perth, Western Australia. HMAS Stirling is the site of the Navy’s west coast operational and ship repair and maintenance facilities. IT also provides home port facilities for almost half of the Royal Australian Navy fleet, including submarines, frigates and support vessels.
During the visit, HRH was escorted to Diamantina Pier and HMAS Sheehan, a submarine named after Ordinary Seaman Edward Sheean. The only vessel named after a rating in a Commonwealth Navy. Edward Sheean, aged 18 despite being wounded, forsook a lifeboat to stay on his sinking vessel HMS Armidale to strap himself to the anti aircraft gun defending his comrades left in the water from Japanese air attack. He went down with the ship, still firing.
The Duke was later taken on a tour of the Submarine Training and Support Centre which included Warfare simulation, submarine navigation training and augmented and virtual reality blended learning.
HRH also met with the families of personnel deployed on HMAS Rankin. Rankin has been deployed for 7 months in operations across the globe.
Later that day, HRH arrived at Freemantle Ports to unveil the first marker of the Commonwealth Walkways Freemantle. The Commonwealth Walkways is an initiative of the Outdoor Trust and are an expansion of the Jubilee Walkways; urban trails to benefit those who walk them. Her Majesty The Queen unveiled a marker in the gardens of Buckingham Palace, The Prince of Wales unveiled a marker at the opening of the Commonwealth Games in Queensland and The Duke of York has now unveiled the only marker in an indigenous language, with the Fremantle Plaque incorporating Wadjak.