News

What is Trafalgar Day? Commemorations, history, and more


A

celebration is being held to commemorate Trafalgar Day today on HMS Victory, the Royal Navy’s most famous warship.

October 21 marks the anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar, a battle that defined the Age of Sail and which secured British dominion of the seas for 100 years.

But what is Trafalgar Day and its significance? Here is everything you need to know about the day.

What is Trafalgar Day and how is it celebrated?

Trafalgar Day is an annual celebration of the Royal Navy victory over the French and Spanish fleets at the Battle of Trafalgar, on October 21, 1805.

Read More

According to the Royal Navy’s website, the public is encouraged to treat the day as an “act of remembrance rather than just a celebration of victory”.

The aim of the day is to remember “the loss of the country’s greatest ever naval leader and the lives of men on both sides who perished in the fierce battle, or subsequently, from their injuries”.

Trafalgar Day starts with the daily naval ceremony of Colours, where the White Ensign of the Royal Navy and the Union Jack are raised. After this, there is a flag sequence indicating Nelson’s famous message to the Fleet: “England expects that every man will do his duty”.

An annual ceremony is held on board HMS Victory to mark the anniversary of the victory, while also remembering the loss of Lord Nelson and those who lost their lives or were injured in battle.

Commissioned officers of the Royal Navy also usually celebrate the occasion by holding a traditional Trafalgar Night dinner in the officers’ mess.

More dinners also take place in various locations, including the Royal Naval Museum in Portsmouth, as well as further celebrations across the UK, with the Sea Cadet Corps holding the National Trafalgar Day Parade on Trafalgar Square, as well as a traditional ceremony in Birmingham, where a wreath in the shape of an anchor is laid on the statue of Lord Nelson.

Who was Nelson and what is the history of Trafalgar Day?

The Royal Navy victory was commanded by Vice-Admiral Horatio Nelson, who is thought of as the greatest officer in the history of the Royal Navy.

Nelson famously split the line of enemy ships, setting the pre-conditions for victory. Only an hour into the battle, Nelson was then hit by a French sharpshooters’ musket ball as he paced HMS Victory’s quarterdeck.

Nelson fell after being fatally wounded, on a spot marked by a lovingly polished brass plaque. Today, this forms the centrepiece of the Trafalgar Day Ceremony.

What is HMS Victory?

HMS Victory is a ship best known as Horatio Nelson’s flagship at the Battle of Trafalgar. Today, Victory is docked at Portsmouth and is the oldest commissioned warship in the world.

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button