Thursday, 8 March 2018

A visit to HMAS Success

On Friday 2 March I visited HMAS Success to deliver some laundry bags. 

They were about to head off on a deployment, not the sort that we can usually support as they do not have free postage, but still they will be at sea for a few months, and some laundry bags would be a very welcome addition to their kit. 

They called a Clear Lower Deck... this basically a naval order for all hands on board to muster on the upper deck. The only crew exempt from such an order are those on watch in the machinery spaces where the machinery is actually running.

Everyone mustered on the flight deck in a U shape under the supervision of the Buffer -  the The chief boatswain's mate who responsible for discipline.

The Ship's Command Warrant Officer said a few words, talking about Aussie Heroes and then introducing me to hand out just a small portion of the laundry bags I had taken along. 

The first person to receive his laundry bag was the captain.

His bag was a surprise for him, he had not been expecting it but I found I had a spare couple of hours the day before so decided to make him one as I knew that he would not take one otherwise.  Of course it had a 

Of course it had an HMAS Success Battle Tanker theme 

but I also managed to ascertain that he is a Penrith fan as well

Then it was time to present laundry bags to about 16 of the crew 

and then I was invited to say a few words. 

The captain also spoke 

and surprised me with an HMAS Success cap 

and one of his newly minted "First Lady of the Fleet" Coins.  

The CO told me I was the first person to receive one.  How very special. 

HMAS Success became the first lady of the Fleet when HMAS Darwin was decommissioned in December last year. 

These are the recipients who received laundry bags on the day but the rest of the bags, roughly 100 of them, will be handed out once HMAS Success sails.    I did not have enough bags on hand for the entire crew but some of them will have received bags when they deployed to the Middle East or perhaps whilst posted to other ships.   That said, the Command Warrant Officer will let me know if anyone who wants a bag has missed out and we will make sure there are enough bags for those crew members when they come home from this current deployment. 

We have already received some thank you messages from some of these recipients and I can tell you that there were plenty of smiles on faces when the bags were handed out. 

Till next time.... keep spreading the word and happy stitching!

Jan-Maree xx


  1. Awesome, great photo's, almost like being there! Well done once again JM and everyone who made these bags and this presentation possible....great work!

  2. Great work First Lady of the Fleet!