Saluting a ship

Discussion in 'History' started by Ross01, Jun 5, 2010.

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  1. Sorry if this in the wrong forum but when you (dis)embark a ship, where are you supposed to face when you salute? I was told by a P.O. that you are supposed to face the ensign but most guys seem to just face ahead in the direction they are travelling or face the bridge.
  2. Saluting the Quarterdeck. Some hold that the salute to the quarterdeck is derived from the very early seagoing custom of the respect paid to the pagan altar on board ship, and later to the crucifix and shrine. Others hold that the custom comes from the early days of the British Navy when all officers who were present on the quarterdeck returned the salute of an individual by uncovering (removing the hat). The original salute consisted of uncovering. The salute, touching the hat, to the seat of authority, the quarterdeck, the place nearest the colors, is an old an tradition.
  3. You are supposed to salute the Ensign. That is what I was always informed. However most just chop a salute off
  4. As Tommo said.
  5. Only officers on boats.
  6. I am not familiar with these arcane practices.

    All I know is that ships must come to a dead stop until I have walked-by. It's a respect thing.
  7. Ageing_Gracefully

    Ageing_Gracefully War Hero Moderator Book Reviewer

    You are Jesus and I claim my £5
  8. Thanks for the replies.

    The ensign is normally located at the quarterdeck, isn't it, so I guess you can't go wrong by facing that direction. Unless, of course, the ensign just happens to be somewhere else!
  9. Here is what QRRN says on the matter (edited article):

    9231. Salutes
    1. Naval Personal Salute. The personal salute, in addition to being a mark of respect, is an act of courtesy and good manners. It is never wrong to salute even if subsequently the person saluting another discovers that person is not entitled to be saluted. All Service personnel are to salute on the occasions and in the manner prescribed below:

    4. Saluting Occasions
    a. All officers and ratings in uniform are to salute the following on all occasions:

    b. On board Her Majesty’s ships.
    (1) All Officers and ratings are to salute when coming onboard or leaving one of Her Majesty’s ships. The Hand Salute is only to be made when in uniform. When civilian clothes are worn, the person saluting stands to attention at the inboard head of the brow for the duration of 2 marching paces before carrying on. For all officers, the gangway staff will return the salute of officers crossing the ship’s brow.

    Personally I have always saluted straight ahead when going in either direction - note that between sunset/evening colours and colours there is no ensign flying to turn towards anyway.
  10. So there is no official direction to face, then?
  12. In my time you only did the 'mark of respect' if you were visiting a
    ship or vessel you didn't belong to or weren't part of its crew.
    Or on first joining your ship.

    Normally ships have two gangways or brows the after one is basically for ceremonial and officers . The forward one is for the ratings and crew members and for stores movements . Using the forward gangang way the mark of respect is usually relaxed.

  13. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    I never chucked one up when going on or off HMS Fearless...Was I supposed to?

    I've done a few ceremonial best bib and tucker jobs stood by the gangway but that doesn't count as normal daily movement around the place. I even had to do a "Crash" guard of honour once when a Russian Admiral was spotted bimbling towards the ship, much to my amusement he turned out to be a stoker who'd swapped his uniform in a pub with some local who'd stolen his fathers......Pure class.
  14. Tricky with roll-mats on each arm mucker
  15. wet_blobby

    wet_blobby War Hero Moderator

    Yep, you keep hitting yourself, looks real special needs.
  16. Would that have been in Split in late '82?

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