On Monday 29th July, Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will visit The Historic Dockyard Chatham in Kent.
This follows the announcement in April that the Prince has agreed to become Patron of Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust for a five year term. The Dockyard has confirmed that visitors on the 29th will get the chance to see the Prince and the Duchess during the day.
Admiral Sir Ian Garnett, Chairman of Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust said; “His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales honoured the work of Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust over the 29 years of its existence by agreeing to become Patron earlier this year. We are especially pleased that he has now confirmed a visit here on 29th July accompanied by HRH The Duchess of Cornwall to mark his Patronage and see for himself what has been achieved since his last visit 9 years ago.”
The last British Royal to visit the Dockyard was Prince Michael of Kent, to open the new Ropery exhibition. Prince Michael is also Patron of the Chatham Historic Dockyard Volunteer Service. In 2009, the Duke of Gloucester was in attendance along with the Prime Minister, at the time, Gordon Brown at the first National Armed Forces Day held at the Dockyard.
In 2007, the Duke of Edinburgh was at Chatham Dockyard to dedicate HMS Cavalier, a World War Two Destroyer, as the National Destroyer Memorial 1939-1945, to commemorate the 142 Royal Navy destroyers sunk during the Second World War with the loss of over 11,000 men. A bronze monument, part of the National Destroyer Memorial, was unveiled at the same time by the Duke.
For over 400 years, the Dockyard and naval base at Chatham played a crucial role in supporting the Royal Navy in the defence of Britain and the development of the Empire and Commonwealth. In 1588, Chatham prepared the ships of the Elizabethan Navy for battle against the Spanish Armada. Nelson’s flagship, HMS Victory was launched into the River Medway from the Dockyard at Chatham. The end of the Cold War led to the Dockyard’s closure in 1984, and the most historic part was then opened as a visitor attraction.