Princess Margaret visit to Vancouver B.C. Canada, 1958

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I thought you might like to take a look at this. The City of Victoria, where I live, on the southern tip of Vancouver Island has a naval base. Princess Margaret, the queen's younger sister ( now deceased ) visited in 1958 and toured here in a '58 Imperial Convertible and inspected the base. Rumor has it that the car is still sitting somewhere in a field in an outlying rural area. I posted the article and photos on the Forward Look Forum. Ian Smale WPC Club webmaster (Oct. 2010)

Here's the article that was in today's local paper, the Times-Colonist along with some photos.

Five foreign navies sending ships for Centennial

22 ships, parade of 8,000 sailors mark rare fleet review next month

The first fleet review in Canadian waters took place July 16, 1958, when 32 ships from Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom anchored in the waters of Royal Roads. Princess Margaret inspected the ships from aboard the HMCS Crescent for 40 minutes as part of the celebration for B.C.'s centennial year. Thousands lined the shores for the spectacle, which included an elaborate fireworks show.

A dozen ships from five foreign navies will steam into local waters in June in a show of respect for Canada's navy on its 100th anniversary.

Esquimalt and Colwood will host the Canadian Naval Centennial Pacific Fleet Review June 9-14, with events including an 8,000-strong parade of sailors in Victoria, aerial displays over the ships and inter-navy matches of soccer, ball-hockey and other sports.

Gov. Gen. Micha'lle Jean will inspect 22 Canadian and foreign vessels anchored in the waters between Esquimalt and Metchosin's Albert Head from on board the HMCS Algonquin.

The U.S navy alone is planning to send five ships, including the 333-metre USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier. Japan and New Zealand are each sending two ships.

Canadian navy spokesman Lt. Paul Pendergast said it's no small thing for frigates and destroyers from across the Pacific to travel so far for the event.

"It's really halfway around the world with hundreds of sailors in navy ships that cost as much as $1 billion," he said.

Lt.-Cmdr. Kevin Kirkwood said it's a distance that would strain the ranges of even Canada's big ships.

"I crossed the Atlantic in the Huron," he said, referring to the Canadian destroyer he navigated during the 1982 crossing. "We had to single shaft on one engine [to conserve fuel]."

He adds Canadian ships crossing the much larger Pacific Ocean must refuel part way in the Aleutian Islands between eastern Russia and the Alaska mainland.

The vast distances underline the respect of countries sending ships to this year's fleet review, he said.

"It's important for Canadians to see that we have a navy that is respected around the world."

Fleet reviews are relatively rare events planned for equally rare occasions. Recent examples include the 60th anniversary of China's navy last year and the bicentennial of the Battle of Trafalgar in 2005. The last review of Canada's Pacific fleet was 25 years ago during the navy's 75th anniversary. It involved 24 ships from Canada, the United States, Australia and New Zealand.

Jean will not be the only dignitary in attendance. Representatives from various levels of government will be joined by two Canadian admirals as well as senior naval officers from the United States, France and India, a navy spokeswoman said.

Robert Huebert, a professor of political science at the University of Calgary and co-editor of A Nation's Navy: In quest of Canadian Naval Identity, says the strong international attendance underlines the legacy of Canada's long-standing Pacific naval presence.

"One hundred years of independent existence is much longer than most other navies around the world."



June 9: Foreign ships arrive at CFB Esquimalt.

June 10: Gov. Gen. Micha'lle Jean arrives in Victoria.

June 11: A morning parade will run from Wharf Street along Government Street to the legislature, followed by a practice air show by the Snowbirds.

June 12: The fleet review starts at 10 a.m. The Governor General will examine 22 vessels in Esquimalt Harbour from aboard HMCS Algonquin. The fleet review will be followed by a parachute show and a fly-over by maritime and search and rescue aircraft. The Snowbirds will perform.

June 13: Navy personnel will compete in soccer, ball hockey, slow-pitch, rugby, cricket and beach volleyball at CFB Esquimalt.

June 14: Canadian ships will leave CFB Esquimalt as a group in the morning. Foreign ships will leave throughout the day.









Here's the car when it arrived in California in around 1986 or 87. The car was brought to California from Canada.




Here are some additional comments from the Forum page that pertain to the discussion

StillOutThere wrote:

At one time around 15 years ago that Imperial Cv was in the collection of the roofing contractor from Santa Ana, CA, who lived in Perris, CA. He got into IRS trouble and his extensive car collection including several Forward Look cars (the Barrit '55 Impl convertible was among them) were all auctioned off by the IRS in May of 1996. I just can't think of the guy's name. The Imperial had a fair amount of rust going on. It did have a plaid interior that was unique to the car and was part of its pedigree. Seems to me I saw the car in Hemmings or Old Cars about five years ago??? Can someone pick up from there and add more pieces to the story......

d500neil wrote:

The interior style would be from the Queen's Regimental colors.

imopar380 wrote:

That upholstery then, may have been the Windsor Family Tartan, if that's the case. Probably matches the kilt that Prince Charles wears. Apparently the car was last here in and around 1990 from what I've learned from a friend who had actually seen it sitting in the field, complete with the dash plaque.

imopar380 wrote:

Apparently there were six of these convertibles made for the tour, according to the Imperial Club. So there still may be one sitting around here - will have to do some investigating. The one that Wayne mentions that's in California could be one of the others.


This article was taken with permission from the Forward Look Forum in 2010.
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