25 November 2022
The crew of HMAS Wollongong will march through the streets of the City of Wollongong, NSW tomorrow, 26 November 2022.
Approximately 30 crew members of the Armidale Class Patrol Boat, accompanied by members of the Royal Australian Navy Band, will parade through their boat’s namesake city.
Commanding Officer HMAS Wollongong, Lieutenant Commander Matthew Hams, said his crew was looking forward to reaffirming their bond with the City.
“This is the first time since 2017 that HMAS Wollongong’s crew have conducted a Freedom of Entry in Wollongong.”
“It will be a great honour to lead the ship’s company in what will be our last parade before the boat decommissions in December,” Lieutenant Commander Hams said.
“Thanks to the City of Wollongong for your support. We value the relationship forged through our shared name and history.”
The Freedom of Entry parade starts in Church Street at 10am. Personnel will march past the Cenotaph in MacCabe Park andtravel along Crown Street Mall, where the formalities will take place.
The tradition of Freedom of Entry dates back to medieval times and is the highest accolade a town can award a military unit. It is a mark of trust and respect.
Since commissioning in 2007, HMAS Wollongong has worked alongside Border Force, Australian Fisheries and the Australian Federal Police as part of border protection operations. It has served in Operations AUGURY (Philippines,) SOLANIA (South West Pacific) and APEC ASSIST (PNG).
Media can access imagery of HMAS Wollongong at http://images.defence.gov.au/S20223859
Information on HMAS Wollongong can be found at HMAS Wollongong (III) | Royal Australian Nav