First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope has seen his flag hoisted at HMS Victory in a handover ceremony with the new Second Sea Lord, Vice Admiral David Steel. Earlier the outgoing Second Sea Lord, Vice Admiral Sir Charles Montgomery, had stepped down from his duties after 37 years of naval service.
Trumpets sounded at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard before a handover ceremony at Lord Nelson’s flagship.
Members of the Royal Marines School of Music performed Auld Lang Syne in a farewell ceremony for the outgoing Second Sea Lord, Vice Admiral Sir Charles Montgomery.
That came before the new Second Sea Lord, Vice Admiral David Steel, formerly handed over his flagship HMS Victory to the First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope.
It was as Commander-in-Chief Naval Home Command that the Second Sea Lord flew his flag in Victory, but defence re-organisation means that the title no longer exists.
As Adm Stanhope retains full command responsibility, Victory will now become his flagship. He said yesterday:
“It is a great honour for me to hoist the Flag of the First Sea Lord in HMS Victory.
“It also reflects the increased role that the First Sea Lord now plays in the running of the Royal Navy from the headquarters in Portsmouth.”
Vice Adm Steel has returned to Portsmouth after working in London, having previously been Naval Base Commander. He said:
“I’m stepping into quite a similar role because I was the deputy to the Second Sea Lord for quite some time.
“I’ve obtained good knowledge of Portsmouth because I was naval commander here between 2005 and 2008.
“I have a great love for this city.”
Naval Today Staff,October 15, 2012; Image: Royal Navy