The beer flowed well all evening with plenty of yarns to be told. Everyone remembered each other better this time as it had only been two years since last meeting. We were entertained throughout the evening by a single male singer but with all the electronics used today he sounded just as loud as any group and the Hotel put on a superb buffet. Frank Scutt gave a short speech just to let us all know what was going to happen the following day. I am not sure what time the drinking went on till as I retired at 0100 but going by the eyes of some people the following morning at breakfast it went on quite late.
Saturday 5th May dawned sunny and warm after breakfast all staying at the hotel gathered outside and then made our way to Barrow Town Hall, here we met up with other Repulsives, we then left the wives and made our way down to where the Parade was falling in. This parade was made up of a Naval Guard a contingent of Submariners UK and Canadian and youth organizations plus Standard Bearers from various submariner Associations. We fell in at the rear of all these waiting to be marched off, when we were suddenly spied by a WO GI and no they have not changed since our days up he marched stick under arm and asked what we were doing falling in with his Sailors rank did try to explain to him who we were but to no avail we were politely told to go away, this brought many a tear to old comrades eyes as they had never been dismissed from a parade before. With this the parade moved off led by the Royal Marine Band from Edinburgh.
Any way we made our way back to the Town Hall to watch the Navy being given the Freedom of Barrow this Ceremony was completed by the Guard fixing Bayonets and marching through the town.
We all with wives made our way back to the Parade area where most of the general public were now gathering also, after a bit of milling around the Royal Marine Band arrived and once again we were spied by our Friendly!!!! GI but this time he was more pleasant and asked us if we wished to now take part, so of we all went and fell in behind the Band. Volunteers were asked to take control of their platoons so good old Frank stepped forward. The Band struck up and of we marched yes marched and very well we all did everyone in step, as we reached the parade ground the crowd clapped us old veterans. We all took up our places and then waited Tony Whetstone arrived and took up his place by the dais by this time everyone was feeling the heat but we all stood firm. Tony called the parade to attention and Flag Officer Submarines Rear Admiral Stephenís arrived, he then carried out an inspection of all mustered and had a chat with most.
Having got back to the Dais he gave a speech about the last hundred years and what a great year this is going to be for the Submarine Service also what it meant to the service being given the Freedom of Barrow.
He then presented medals and a Submarine badge(Dolphins) to an ex X craft Submariner who had never received them on discharge after the war. After this we all Marched passed the Flag Officer and as we left the parade Tony Whetstone and taken up his position and we all eyes right for him. After falling out the rest of the day was our own which was spent looking round the various displays put on by the shipyard BAE Systems and some went of to local bars. The next venue where everyone gathered was the local Rugby ground where we were entertained to an under thirteenís rugby match one team represented the submariners the other team represented the skimmers, unfortunately we lost. This was followed by beating the retreat by the Royal Marine Band.
We all then departed back to our Hotels to get ready for the evening Dinner Dance. The evening started at 1900hrs with pre dinner drinks and at 1930 we sat down to eat once again many yarns were swapped. On completion of dinner we were entertained by the same chap we had the night before, Frank gave a short speech reading out apologies from those that could not get this time and thanking all for attending once again. Once again at breakfast the following day eyes looked terrible on everyone. Goodbye were said by those who had to get away but at 1100hrs an AGM was held. (Report will be placed on this site).
See attached Photos of weekend.