|World Ship Trust Maritime Heritage Award|
Adapted to HAIDA's web page by Jerry Proc
The World Ship Trust was extremely grateful to His Royal Highness for finding a moment in his busy schedule to present the Maritime Heritage Award to HMCS Haida in recognition of her outstanding preservation and maintenance. It is interesting to note that there is close and valuable cooperation between the Canadian authorities and those in Poland responsible for ORP Blyskawica, which received a similar award in 2007.
On 29th June CEO Alan Latourelle, Carla Morse, Jim Brewer and Alice Willems travelled to Halifax to receive the World Ship Trust Maritime Heritage Award in recognition of the outstanding preservation and maintenance of HMCS Haida National Historic Site. At 1015 they were assembled in the Morning Room of the newly renovated Government House in Halifax with members of the World Ship Trust and the Honourable Peter McKay, Minister of National Defence, awaiting His Royal Highness The Prince Philip, who had agreed to present the Award.
Commander Eric Bremen, representing the World Ship Trust, escorted the Prince into the room and presented the four award recipients. After brief conversation, the moment arrived when Alan Latourelle stepped up to receive the fine bronze medal from Prince Philip stating that he was pleased to receive it on behalf of Parks Canada. The Prince then presented the citation to Alice Willems saying, “Where are you going to hang it – in your bathroom?” Silenced for a brief moment of surprise, Alice responded, “Well I could, Sir, but I was going to invite you to come and see it,” to which the Prince replied, “I accept.” Much laughter followed and the ice was truly broken after that exchange.
Having accepted a leather bound copy of Barry Gough’s book about
HMCS Haida, entitled Battle Ensign Flying, His Royal Highness departed
for his next event. Recipients gathered their awards, dismantled the Parks
Canada banners and set off for the front door. They were told to return
to the Morning Room as the Royal couple was about to depart and they were
in the way. Quite some time elapsed and Alan made himself comfortable on
the sofa, removing his jacket. Carla Morse happened to look out into the
hallway to see if they could leave and saw the Queen and Prince Philip
heading towards their room. They were trapped, Carla said, “The Queen is
coming,” and, although he did not really believe her, Alan stood up and
put on his jacket. Into the room swept Her Majesty and His Royal Highness
and it would be difficult to say who was more surprised. The Prince came
to the rescue and introduced the Queen to Jim Brewer as “the chap who looks
after the ship!” The Queen and Jim shook hands, exchanged a few words and
then they were gone. Being presented to the Queen by Prince Philip is almost
unknown – Royal protocol is very strict – but it provided the four Award
recipients with the experience of a lifetime, not to mention a unique honour
for shipkeeper Jim Brewer.
|His Royal Highness presents the emblem of the World Ship Trust Maritime Heritage Award to a Alan Latourelle, CEO Parks Canada, with, centre, the Hon Peter McKay, Minister of National Defence. (Photo: Department of Canadian Heritage)|
|From left to right: Mrs Eric Berryman, Shipkeeper Jim Brewer, Carla Morse, Heritage Presentation Specialist, Alice Willems, Manager, National Historic Sites, SW Ontario, Lynn Mallet, World Ship Trust Executive Secretary, Alan Latourelle, CEO Parks Canada, The Hon. Peter McKay, Minister of National Defence, and His Royal Highness. Out of the frame is Commander Eric Berryman, the Trust’s Adviser in the USA. (Photo: Denis Dreaver, Department of Canadian Heritage)|