hrhprincemichaelHis Royal Highness Prince Michael of Kent GCVO visited The Historic Dockyard Chatham on Friday 4th October.

This private visit was made primarily to meet members of Chatham Historic Dockyard Volunteer Service (CHDVS) of which HRH Prince Michael has been patron for the past 15 years. His last visit to the dockyard was in 2008 when he opened the newly refurbished Victorian Ropery gallery.

His Royal Highness met and spoke to volunteers before taking a tour of the Steam, Steel & Submarines gallery. He then visited No. 1 Smithery to view the ship models of Royal Museums Greenwich, the John Lavery art exhibition on loan from Imperial War Museums and finally was briefed on the dockyard’s forthcoming Command of the Oceans project.

Alan Bates OBE, Chairman of CHDVS said; “We are always thrilled when Prince Michael is able to find time in his busy schedule to come and visit us. He is patron of 163 organisations and charities which take him all over the world, so to come to Chatham is always an honour. Whether one is retired or in employment, being a Volunteer at The Historic Dockyard Chatham allows one a chance to work on a variety of projects and mix with like minded people, which in turn gives one a great sense of achievement, not to mention the inevitable camaraderie!”

Bill Ferris OBE, Chief Executive of Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust said; “It was an absolute honour that HRH Prince Michael of Kent visited us to see the hard work of his charity, CHDVS. We have highly committed teams of volunteers here at the dockyard. They contribute over 38,000 volunteer hours per year, working in a variety of specific areas of our operation. We are very grateful for the outstanding contribution that all of our volunteer groups make to the success of our activities with especial gratitude to CHDVS for their contribution not only to the working life of The Historic Dockyard but also to its story through their former role as The Royal Naval Auxiliary Service (RNXS) – a story that they have helped to tell in our Steam Steel and Submarines Gallery) – without such support the Trust would never have been able to achieve so much.”