NW – Diamond Jubilee Cruise, 2 June 2012

The main Jubilee Event for the  NW Region incorporating our QPB was held on the sunny Rhine on Saturday 02 June on board the Rhine steamer ” Basledybli”. The event was organized jointly by The British Residents’ Association and The Royal Over-Seas League (ROSL) with several other clubs and associations supporting.
Nearly 140 members and guests were piped aboard to the sound of the pipes and drums of the Dalhousie Pipe Band following a colourful display of Highland Dancing,  including the Jubilee Jig, from the Scottish Country Dance Group Basel.
Amongst the guests on board were our BRA Chairman Michael Type, the Director-General of ROSL Major General Roddy Porter (who had flown in specially from London), Felix Rudolf von Rohr, former Director of the Basel Fasnacht, Bryan Stone the photographer of our Jubilee Exhibition, Mr André Auderset, Director of the Swiss Shipping and Harbours Association, the Mayor of Weil-am- Rhein  and Mrs Deitz as well as representatives of the Consular Corps – also BRA and ROSL members from many parts of Switzerland.
The Loyal Toast to Her Majesty the Queen on her Diamond Jubilee  was proposed by Major Porter. A greeting from HM Ambassador Sarah Gillett  was read by Alan Chalmers Council Member and former Honorary Consul for BS, BL This is the first time we have held our QPB on  a ship on the Rhine. A vote of thanks to all was proposed by Angela Meier-Jones NW BRA Chair.
Partly the objective was to mirror the Pageant of Ships on the Thames in London on Sunday 03 June as part of the UK Jubilee celebrations and emphasize the links between the UK and Switzerland by the maritime connection of the Rhine over sea to the Thames.
Basel can uniquely do this as the Port of Switzerland. Whereas the number of boats in London was a hundred-fold those on the Rhine, we did have glorious sunny and warm weather unlike the UK.  In addition all Basel ferries also had Union Jacks flying for the day.
Here are photos of the event:

Afterwards members could meet at the Hotel Marian where traditional Fish + Chips was being served all day. This was also the location of a  Jubilee photographic exhibition from Bryan Stone including original photos of HM the Queen on the opening day, 01 May 1980, of Green 80  and many shipping photographs of historical interest linking the two countries.

Finally a tea party and Choral Evensong was organized in Basel Münster Niklauskapelle by the Anglican Church Basel to round off the weekend of celebrations.

Alan Chalmers

There is now a report of this event ib the Sept.-Nov. 2012 edition of “Overseas”, the quarterly journal of the Royal Overseas League, which you can look at here, or consult the full edition at their website.