-H.M.S. Hood Association Online Archive-
Armistice Day Gathering, 11 November 2009
Updated 06-May-2014

On Amistice Day, Wednesday 11 November 2009 people came together at the Portsmouth Naval Memorial on the Southsea Common to remember those who lost their lives in the sinking of H.M.S. Hood in May 1941.

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As has been our customer for many years, members of the Association gathered again on 11 November 2009, Armistice Day, at the Naval War Memorial on Southsea common for a short service of grateful remembrance of those who died in the World Wars. We are the last Association to hold a service on Armistice Day itself rather than on Remembrance Sunday and we are happy to keep this tradition going.

Our service this year was led by Father Bernard Clarke, QHC, MA, FRGS, RN. Members of the Association began to gather from around 10.30 and included veterans Commander Keith Evans and Alec Kellaway. Others present included Simon Sillence (Association Standard Bearer), Paul Bevand (our Membership Secretary), Alan Plant (whom we believe to have been an Association member for longer than any other current member), John Clark (son of recently departed Association founder Ken ‘Nobby’ Clark), Hazel Collins, Jean Winter, Steve Lovelock and Michael Nottage. We were also glad to see representatives of other naval Associations including Anne Randall of the Dunedin Society. In addition we were delighted to be joined by a larger than usual groups from other military associations and members of the general public. In all we numbered around 80.

The service started at around 10.50 with an opening prayer by Father Clarke. This was followed by the Act of Remembrance which was read by Commander Evans. Father Clarke had timed the commencement of the service perfectly as, immediately we had all replied “We will remember them,” the field gun fired to start the silence.

The service continued after the silence with a prayer and the Bidding which was read by Commander Evans.  AT the end of the Bidding we all said the Our Father together before a we heard a passage from St. John’s Gospel read for us by Hood Veteran Alec Kellaway. After this we all said the Naval Prayer together. Paul Bevand read the Act of Commitment in the absence of our Patron Lord Hood, who sadly, was not able to join us on this occasion. The service ended with a blessing given by Father Clarke.

Once again, we all went away feeling that it was important that we continue to keep this service on Armistice Day going and that it is certainly a significant service that the Hood Association provides in organising the event on behalf of the whole community.

Several members and other present adjourned to the Royal Maritime Club in Portsmouth for a spot of lunch and a drink before heading home.

The following are photos from the event:

Standard Bearer Simon Sillence
Standard Bearer Simon Sillence

Veteran Alec Kellaway and Association members
Veteran Alec Kellaway and Association members

John Clark (far right), son of the late Ken "Nobby" Clark
John Clark (far right), son of the late Ken "Nobby" Clark

Keith Evans (left), Father Clarke (centre) and Simon Sillence (right)
Veteran Keith Evans (left), Father Clarke (centre) and Simon Sillence (right)

Keith Evans (left), Alec Kellaway (centre) and Father Clarke (right)
Keith Evans (left), Alec Kellaway (centre) and Father Clarke (right)

Left to right- Paul Bevand, Keith Evans, Alec Kellaway, Father Clarke and Simon Sillence
Left to right- Paul Bevand, Keith Evans, Alec Kellaway, Father Clarke and Simon Sillence

Alan Plant (front/centre) and Association Members
Alan Plant (front/centre) and Association Members

Wreaths laid at the memorial
Wreaths laid at the memorial