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Rear Admiral’s Barge Pennant, 1966
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Rear Admiral’s Barge Pennant, 1966

Measurements: Overall: 35.5cm (14in) x 21cm (8.25in)

£185

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Wool/synthetic bunting machine-sewn barge pennant of a Rear Admiral, R.N., displaying a white field charged with a red cross overall and two red discs in the hoist quarters. Inscribed in ink on the hoist ‘M. Walker C.P.O. H.M.S. Tiger Adml’s Coxn June 1966’ and verso ‘Rear Adml Pollock 2.2 ..’ Framed between glass. 

H.M.S. Tiger was a conventional cruiser ordered in 1941 but not put into service until 1959. Rear-Admiral Michael Pollock flew his flag in her as Flag Officer, Second-in-Command, Home Fleet, from May 1966 during which CPO Walker witnessed several significant events as the Admiral’s coxswain. During the Second World War Admiral Pollock was gunnery officer in the cruiser Norfolk when she fought the German battleship Scharnhorst during the Battle of North Cape. He later commanded the aircraft carrier Ark Royal and became an Admiral of the Fleet.

In October 1966, the Tiger was visiting Cardiff when the Aberfan disaster struck. The crew assisted with the rescue and recovery operation. From 2 to 4 December 1966, Tiger hosted talks between Prime Ministers Harold Wilson and Ian Smith of Rhodesia. The latter had unilaterally declared independence from Britain due to Britain's insistence on the removal of white minority rule. When the Rhodesian delegation arrived, Tiger was a few miles off shore, and the delegation was ferried out in a small craft, probably involving the Admiral’s coxswain. The Tiger then moved out to sea, but moved close to harbour when the Rhodesian delegation disembarked. On Wilson's orders, the British and Rhodesian delegations were ‘separated in all activities outside the conference room’.

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