HMS Montrose is a Type 23 Duke class frigate based in Plymouth and has been our long-standing naval affiliate since 1998. Our association remains very active, with Liverymen occasionally visiting the ship at home and when deployed operationally overseas. We provide a Team prize each year and host members of the ship’s crew at Livery functions.
HMS Montrose Sails From Devonport Once More
On 7 July, HMS Montrose sailed from Devonport, Plymouth for the first time since she entered an extended refit period in 2014, under the command of her new captain, Commander Conor O’Neill Royal Navy.
The refit saw a vast amount of work conducted on the ship, including deep maintenance to maintain her material state and upgrades to key
systems to keep her at the cutting edge of military technology. Foremost among the upgrades was the installation of the Sea Ceptor surface-to-air missile system, replacing the venerable Sea Wolf missile, which first saw service in the Falklands conflict in 1982. Cdr O’Neill commented, “It has been a very proud moment for everyone onboard taking Montrose back to sea. We look forward to seeing more Distillers onboard and at sea in the near future.”
She rejoins the fleet formally in November. The rededication ceremony will take place on November 23 at Her Majesty’s naval base Devonport, where our Distillers company will be represented by Steve Wilson and Nick Carr.
Special Mission for the ship – Unique voyage (Link to The Times)
825 NAS Squadron
825 Naval Air Squadron – our naval aviation affiliate – is based at Yeovilton in Somerset. The Squadron provides the flight crew and support teams for the front line Wildcat helicopters that serve on board the fleet worldwide. The Distillers’ prize is awarded annually to the most outstanding young engineer in training.
A (LONDON SCOTTISH) Company, The London Regiment
Pictured below is the pipe banner of the Worshipful Company of Distillers. Members may have seen it worn at dinners as the pipers play around the tables for the ceremony of the loving cup. On this occasion it was on display at the Menin Gate Memorial to the Missing in the Belgian City of Ieper (Ypres). The Volunteer Fire Department there have sounded the Last Post on bugles every night at 8:00 PM since 1928. The London Scottish Regiment were honoured to be invited to participate on Saturday 5th October 2019. The Regimental contingent numbered 100 and included the Pipes and Drums, Serving Officers, Non-Commissioned Officers and Soldiers, Cadets and Regimental Association. A crowd of about 2000 were in attendance. The Regiment was in Belgium on a five-yearly pilgrimage to re-dedicate our Memorial at Messines, site of the London Scottish first going into battle on 31st October 1914, the first Territorial Troops so to do.
The Worshipful Company of Distillers adopted the London Scottish Regiment as the affiliated Army unit in 1965 and a Pipe Banner with the arms of the Company was presented soon after and worn on special occasions. The relationship has carried on and A (The London Scottish Company), The London Regiment (as we are now officially known) is very proud to be affiliated to the Worshipful Company of Distillers. Three years ago the fifty year old banner was showing signs of wear and that one was retired but replaced with a smart new banner which is the one shown under the Menin Gate below.
Both Photos courtesy of Daphne Vangheluwe