Royal Navy To March "With Fixed Bayonets And Colours Flying"
Residents and visitors are encouraged to line the streets of Portsmouth from 11.20am on Friday 11th March 2022 to support the Royal Navy as they exercise their rights under Freedom of the City to march through Portsmouth "with fixed bayonets and colours flying".
Members of the Royal Navy, led by Band Of Her Majesty's Royal Marines Portsmouth, will march from Queen Street Gate, HMS Nelson to Guildhall Square. A short ceremony will follow in Guildhall Square, conducted by the Royal Naval Chaplain and Chaplain Anthony Cane. Among the invited guests will include The Lord Mayor, Leader of Portsmouth City Council and Lord-Lieutenant of Hampshire.
The Freedom of the City of Portsmouth was originally awarded in November 1964 to Portsmouth Command of the Royal Navy. As the Royal Naval structure has changed the council have agreed to transfer the honorary grant to Portsmouth Naval Base and Portsmouth Ships. It was originally granted to pay tribute to the traditions of the Royal Navy over the many centuries of gallant and distinguished service to our Sovereign and country. Also to acknowledge the great part which the Royal Navy plays and has for so long played in the life and development for the city. This further strengthens and fosters close bonds, which exist between the city and the Royal Navy.
An Extraordinary Full Council meeting in February 2022, approved unanimously the honorary grant transfer, where they stated that the council wishes to continue to promote the essence of the original Freedom grant.
With 13,000 people employed at Portsmouth Naval Base, which contributes an estimated £450 million to Portsmouth economy. There are also 1,200 companies that supply the base, many of which are local.
The route will start at 11.30am from Nelson Gate on Queen Street, head up Bishop Crispian Way to Edinburgh Roa, down the bottom of Commercial Road and past Portsmouth and Southsea train station before parading on to Guildhall Square shortly befor 12pm. There will be rolling road closures during the march.