Renaming Ceremony - Greenwich - 18 October 2013

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Renaming Ceremony ~ 'Carrick' back to 'City of Adelaide'

NOTE: Registrations close at midnight British Summer Time on Wednesday 16-October-2013.

Date: Friday, 18-October-2013;  Start: 2:30 PM

Short Description

According to mariner superstitions, to rename a ship without appeasing the gods of the sea and the winds will bring bad luck to the ship at sea. In 2001, the clipper's name reverted to City of Adelaide but without a ceremony. After having been named Carrick in 1923, a renaming ceremony is now needed as the City of Adelaide is about to proceed on her first international voyage since 1893.

A Renaming Ceremony, followed by a Cocktail Reception, will be held in the presence of His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh KG, KT in front of the Old Royal Naval College at Greenwich.

The visit of the City of Adelaide to Greenwich, the home of the Cutty Sark, will also bring together the world's last two surviving clipper ships.

Venue Water Gate, Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich
2 Cutty Sark Gardens, Greenwich, SE10 9NN, United Kingdom
Date and Time Friday, 18th October 2013 - 2.30pm. 
Finish: ~ 5:30 pm
Ticket Cost £25 per head - online registration and payment essential - see below
Event Contact Jan Gausden, Office of the South Australian Agent General
Enquiries Contact Phone +44 (0) 20 7520 9100
Enquiries Contact Form Renaming Ceremony
Hosted By South Australian Agent General and Clipper Ship City of Adelaide Ltd. (CSCOAL)
Proceeds Proceeds only cover catering and venue costs. Donations are welcomed to help with the transportation of the clipper ship 'City of Adelaide' to Port Adelaide.

Registration is essential by midnight British Summer Time on Wednesday 16-October-2013. Please also see 'Notes and Guidance' at bottom of this page.

Please note that photographic identification, along with the ticket received by email after registration, are required for entry at the event.

Water Gate, Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich


Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich
Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich


Background to Renaming Ceremony

Ninety years ago, in 1923, an old colonial clipper called the City of Adelaide was purchased by the Admiralty and towed to Irvine, Scotland. After conversion to a naval training ship, it was towed to Greenock and commissioned as a Naval Drill Ship for the newly constituted Clyde Division of the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve (RNVR).

As the new cruiser HMAS Adelaide had been commissioned in the Royal Australian Navy only the previous year, the clipper was renamed HMS Carrick. This was to avoid confusion of two British Empire ships named ‘Adelaide’.

On 19th September 2001, a conference was convened in Glasgow by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh and chaired by Sir Julian Oswald the Admiral of the Fleet of the Royal Navy. The purpose of the conference was to discuss the future of the City of Adelaide / HMS Carrick / Carrick / City of Adelaide.

The following was recorded in the post-conference statement approved by the HRH Duke of Edinburgh's office:

The final decision of the conference was that as the significance of the vessel lay in its activities under the name ‘City of Adelaide’ she should in future be known simply as ‘City of Adelaide’.

While the ship has been known by her original name since the 2001 conference, a renaming ceremony was not conducted in 2001.

According to mariner superstitions to rename a ship without appeasing the gods of the sea and the winds will bring bad luck to the ship at sea. A renaming ceremony is now needed, as the City of Adelaide is about to proceed to sea for the first time since 1923, and on the first international voyage since 1893.

As the Cutty Sark and the City of Adelaide are the last two survivors, the voyage represents the last voyage of a 19th Century clipper ship the world will ever see.

Ceremonies involved in naming ships are based in traditions thousands of years old. The Babylonians, Egyptians, Greeks and Romans called on their gods to protect ships and those who sailed in them. The Romans sought favour from their god of the seas, Neptune.

According to mariners’ legend, each and every vessel is recorded by name in the Ledger of the Deep and is known personally to Neptune, the god of the sea. To change the name of a ship, the first thing that must do is to purge its name from the Ledger of the Deep and from Neptune’s memory with a brief ceremony.

Immediately following the purging ceremony, the renaming ceremony is conducted. This is then followed by a final ceremony to appease the gods of the four winds.

Sponsors of British warships were customarily members of the royal family, senior naval officers, or Admiralty officials.

Old Royal Naval College, Greenwich


Registration and Payment ~ Notes and Guidance
  • After clicking on the 'Register Now' button you will have the option to pay via PayPal with most major credit cards.
  • There is a limit of 6 persons per group.
  • After registering, you will receive an automated confirmation email within a few minutes with your registration and payment details.
  • Please print the first part of the confirmation email, which has the ticketing information, and bring it with you to the event along with photographic identification for admission.
  • Please try not to double-click buttons when registering. Double-clicking may result in you receiving two confirmation emails, but with the same Confirmation Number on both. Two emails does not mean that you have double-registered or made a double-payment. (Please feel welcome to email us if you want to check.)
  • Please note that there are very limited car-parks in Greenwich. Trains and other public transport are recommended.

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