Royal Navy to mark Jutland anniversary with parade and ceremony at Southsea

The Royal Navy will be marking the 100th anniversary of The Battle of Jutland with a parade and ceremony at Southsea.

More than 100 sailors will march through the town – led by the Royal Marines Band Collingwood – to Southsea Common war memorial where a 45-minute ceremony and service will take place on May 31.

About 50 veterans from the Royal British Legion and Royal Naval Association will also join the parade.

Members of the public are being encouraged to line the route from Palmerston Road, along Avenue De Caen and the Esplanade. 

Some 6,000 Royal Navy sailors - including 1,869 from Portsmouth - were lost

Commander Andy Green RN

The parade starts outside Knight and Lee, Palmerston Road, at 1.30pm.

Event organiser, Commander Andy Green, said: “The Battle of Jutland was the most significant Naval engagement of the First World War, with more than 100,000 sailors and 250 ships involved.

“Some 6,000 Royal Navy sailors - including 1,869 from Portsmouth - were lost, along with 2,500 German sailors.

“We are hoping that the people of Portsmouth turn out in their numbers to line the route or attend the service and ceremony.”

Cdr Green said relatives of sailors who fought or who were lost in the battle were especially welcome to attend and should contact him at jutland.portsmouth@gmail.com.

The service, which starts at 2pm, will include a drumhead ceremony where drums are piled in a pyramid to create an altar.

Four schoolchildren involved in the WWI schools’ project Never Such Innocence  will give readings about the conflict.

“There have been many commemorations marking the 100th anniversary of World War One battles, but this is the one key date that allows a singular focus on the Royal Navy,” said Cdr Green.