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Canterbury takes pride in its Navy

Canterbury takes pride in its Navy

The strong relationship between Christchurch and the Royal New Zealand Navy is being celebrated with a Charter Parade through the Central City from 12.40pm–2pm on Saturday 1 February.

Of the more than 150 officers and sailors marching in the parade, 120 are crew members of the HMNZS CANTERBURY, enjoying their first opportunity to march through their affiliated home port since the ship’s first visit to the region in June 2007. They will be joined by the Royal New Zealand Navy Volunteer Reserve Unit based inChristchurch, HMNZS PEGASUS, with the Navy Band providing marching tunes and entertainment.

Mayor Lianne Dalziel, who will welcome the ship’s company and reaffirm their freedom of the city, says the people of Christchurch are invited to watch the parade and share in this proud tradition.

“The Navy Charter Parade is a demonstration of the trust and affection between a region and a Royal New Zealand Navy ship – in this case, Canterbury and its namesake in the fleet,” she says.

“HMNZS CANTERBURY carries out some truly noble work, supporting domestic and foreign disaster relief and undertaking humanitarian missions with partner nations. These missions – which include providing relief to Tongaand Samoa after tsunamis in 2009, and to Canterbury after the earthquakes in 2011 – make HMNZS CANTERBURY and its crew among the finest possible ambassadors for our region.”

HMNZS CANTERBURY also provides amphibious sealift and logistics support to carry soldiers, fuel and supplies globally.

HMNZS PEGASUS is home to Christchurch's Royal New Zealand Navy Volunteer Reserve Unit – a ship's company of approximately 40 personnel, including a mixture of ex-RNZN members and ab initio recruits. The Ship's Company are involved in many reputational activities in the Canterbury region and supplement the regular force as required.

The Charter Parade will start at Christ’s College and proceed via Rolleston Avenue and Worcester Boulevard to the Christchurch City Council Civic Offices, outside which a ceremony will take place at 1pm. The parade will then continue through Cathedral Square and down Worcester Street, culminating in Latimer Square.

HMNZS CANTERBURY will also host a free open day to members of the public on Sunday 2 February, 10am–3pm, at Lyttelton Port.

Saturday 1 February

Ceremony takes place outside the Christchurch City Council Civic Offices, 53 Hereford Street, WorcesterBoulevard entrance. Parade forms at Christ’s College at 12.25pm.

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