Home' Navy News : June 9th 2011 Contents cargo and troop-carrying platform, a training platform
and a diplomatic platform," he said.
"She has given us an understanding of how to
carry out amphibious and expeditionary warfare."
More than 3500 people served in Manoora dur-
ing her career in the RAN, including permanently
embarked Army personnel.
CMDR Dryden said the bi-service nature of the
platform contributed to its success.
"It was the excellent people embarked that allowed
us to achieve everything we achieved," he said.
"The cooperation between Navy and Army was
The focus has now shifted to the future and, spe-
cifically, to the next generation of amphibious support
Joining the fleet in 2012 will be Largs Bay; a Bay-
class landing ship recently purchased from the UK to
bolster the fleet's heavy sea-lift capacity.
Then, in 2014, the first of the highly anticipated
Canberra-class LHDs (Helicopter Landing Docks)
will be commissioned, significantly strengthening the
RAN's amphibious capabilities.
In the meantime, Navy has taken out a short-term
lease on the icbreaker Aurora Australis to provide
an additional humanitarian aid and disaster relief
What lies ahead for the old warhorse Manoora is
unclear. The Defence Materiel Organisation has now
taken custody of her hull and is considering options
for her future.
In line with naval tradition, CMDR Dryden was
the last member of Manoora's crew to disembark the
During the ceremony her Australian White Ensign
was presented to Fleet Commander RADM Steve
Gilmore, who said many Australians and countless
people across the region owed much to Manoora and
her ship's company as a result of the support and
relief she provided during periods of war, tension or
"Over the past 10 years, Manoora has made 42
overseas and 105 Australian port visits, successfully
interacting with numerous navies and many thousands
of members of the public," RADM Gilmore said.
"During participation in countless interna-
tional and domestic exercises and training activities,
Manoora has regularly been the highly professional
face of the RAN.
"She leaves a great legacy for our Navy."
RADM Gilmore thanked all those who served in
the ship over the past 17 years.
"You have made Australia and our Navy proud
and you deserve the accolade associated with such
outcomes," he said.
"You should march ashore with your heads held
high and a sense of considerable achievement."
June 9, 2011
GIRL THE crew atmosphere in
Manoora always worked
really well. It was conducive
to training a lot of guys.
Everyone who was trained in
Manoora enjoyed it so much
that many of them wanted
to come back and be a train-
er. People liked serving in
her because they always got
the feeling that they were an
integral member of the ship's
"There was always a
friendly rivalry between
Manoora and HMAS
Kanimbla. There was always
a competition to see who
could get more deck land-
ings in or who could get
more troops ashore faster,
and who could get home
first when we were travelling
-- LEUT Mark Olsson, Signals
Communications Officer, served
in Manoora as a trainee and then
returned to serve as a qualified
Maritime Warfare Officer
SERVICE PRIDE: Chief of Navy VADM Russ Crane
inspects the guard at HMAS Manoora's decommissioing
ceremony in Sydney.
STANDING TALL: Members of HMAS Manoora's crew
stand proudly at the ship's decommissioning.
Photos (above, below, left): ABIS Dove Smithett
ONE day we pulled an
Army unit out of the scrub
in Townsville. I remember
they came on board after
spending four weeks in the
bush with no toiletries, no
soaps, no nothing. They came
aboard absolutely humming.
So we, as a crew, collected all
our spare dhoby gear and got
them cleaned up. That's just
the way we looked after each
other in Manoora.
"The fishing exercises we
held off the back of the stern
door were always good. The
skipper would come down
and pick his fish first, and
then have a yarn to the crew.
We spent a couple of hours
trawling off reefs, and would
have a steel deck barbecue
to cook up what we caught.
It was a great way to relax
in the down time and get to
know your crewmates.
"The crew wasn't full
of glory hounds. We were
always a quiet achiever. We
just got in, deployed forces
and equipment, and then
quietly left. That was our
-- CPOMT Ben Bryan served in
Manoora, on and off, from her
commissioning in 1994 until
WORKING TOGETHER: HMAS Manoora's
crew, including members of the Ship's Army
Detachment, march proudly alongside the
decommissioned ship at Fleet Base East
in Sydney on May 27.
FORMED UP: HMAS Manoora's CO CMDR Stephen
Dryden disembarks the ship as the ship's company
stands at attention at the decommissioning ceremony.
S Manoora -- 2011
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