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Royal Navy helps the Commonwealth War Graves Commission in Malta

23 November 2012

Officers and sailors of HMS Illustrious carried out maintenance work, and laid a wreath at the graves of their fallen comrades, at Malta (Capuccini) Naval Cemetery.

HMS Illustrious sailed into the Grand Harbour in Malta during a three month training deployment to the Mediterranean. The crew contacted the CWGC to offer assistance at the Naval Cemetery in Malta -- an offer which was gratefully accepted by the commission's local supervisor.

The work of serving members of the Royal Navy -- tending the graves of those who have gone before them -- is of practical and symbolic importance for both the Royal Navy and the CWGC.

The 16 sailors who volunteered were led by Lt Kieran Lewis and Father David Conroy. The work included some maintenance (weeding/hoeing) of the graves in the cemetery. Afterwards, a  short service of remembrance was held in the cemetery. The ceremony included the laying of wreaths on the graves of two sailors graves who had served on HMS Illustrious.