The Royal Navy's most important anniversary was marked by a ceremony onboard HMS Victory on Thursday 21 October 2010 at 9 am. The ceremony was attended, for the first time, by Cdr M Paton RN (Rtd) and Mrs E Foster, both direct descendants of Master's Mate Thomas Goble, who was onboard the ship at the Battle of Trafalgar. Thomas was promoted to Nelson's Public Secretary to the Fleet during the action, a post he held for just four hours before Nelson's death. This year is the 205th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar which took place on 21 October 1805. Admiral Nelson's triumph is seen as one of the most decisive naval battles under sail in British history. The anniversary also marks the death of the Royal Navy's most revered leader who was fatally wounded during the action which decisively defeated a Franco-Spanish fleet.
October 21st is the anniversary of the most decisive naval battle under sail in British history - Admiral Lord Nelson's triumph at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. The anniversary also marks the death of the Royal Navy's most revered leader when he was fatally wounded during the action, which ultimately defeated a Franco-Spanish Fleet.
The hoisting of the Colours (Union Jack and White Ensign) and Nelson's signal ''England Expects That Every Man Will Do His Duty'' marked the start of the commemoration onboard HMS Victory. Following in this tradition, a team of ratings and staff from HMS Victory then hoisted the 32 flags in sequence on Victory's three masts.
HMS Victory’s Commanding Officer, Lt Cdr DJ ‘Oscar’ Whild RN said “The battle of Trafalgar is considered to be one of the most important Naval victories. By dying at the moment of victory, Nelson made Trafalgar magical, the ultimate achievement of war at sea and the very heart of a national identity. This year, on the 205th anniversary of that battle, we are very proud to hoist Nelson’s most famous signal from our three masts.The signal is still a poignant reminder of the men who fought and lost their lives with Nelson during the battle.”