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Arctic Convoy Commemoration

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I have received the following email and thought should post it

Scottish Military Vehicle Group

During World War II, Royal Navy and merchant mariners served on the Russian Arctic convoys, which sailed from Loch Ewe in Scotland to the Arctic ports of Murmansk and Archangel in northern Russia.

They provided Russia with much-needed materials and armaments to help them continue the fight against the Germans on the Eastern Front, providing the Allies with the opportunity to launch D-Day. 

Sir Winston Churchill, described the Russian Arctic convoys as ‘the worst journey in the world’. In total, 104 Allied merchant ships with the Arctic convoys were sunk, along with 18 warships; 829 merchant mariners and 1,944 Navy personnel were killed. Russia lost 30 merchant ships and an unknown number of personnel.

At 11am on Saturday 16 May 2020, there will be a 75th anniversary memorial event to mark the end of the Russian Arctic convoys and the end of World War II.This will be held at Inverasdale, by the shores of Loch Ewe.

A UK-wide initiative has been launched to trace surviving veterans of the Russian Arctic convoys, who will be invited to attend, some have already intimated that they will be attending. The event is an opportunity to recognise their sacrifice and that of their comrades.

Special guests will be Joanie Whiteford, Lord Lieutenant of Ross Shire and Cromarty, representing Her Majesty the Queen and Celia Sandys, granddaughter of Sir Winston Churchill. They will be joined by Ambassadors, High Commissioners and Consuls representing those nations whose nationals served on the Russian Arctic convoys, together with other dignitaries and representatives from our own armed forces and armed forces associations. Family members of surviving veterans and those who sadly are no longer with us, together with members of the public will also be there.

This memorial event is not for profit, an opportunity to make sure that these brave men are not forgotten.

The SMVG has been asked by the Russian Arctic Convoy Project and Museum if it would be feasible to  have a number of period vehicles in attendance at the event, and where possible personnel in period uniform. 

Our participation is very much in the planning stage, but it on the understanding that there would be recompense for fuel costs, and there would be provision of meals and possibly accommodation. 

The main event is on Saturday 16th May, and given the distance involved I would think anyone taking part would need to travel to Loch Ewe on Friday 15th. 

At this stage, what I need to know is who would be interested in taking part in this event. I know, given the distance involved, it will not be everyone's cup of tea, but it might be an opportunity to see this remarkable location and support a worthwhile cause in the process.

The Arctic convoys must have been one of the most dangerous duties of the war and the men who endured the hardships are indeed worthy of recognition and remembrance. 

Please let me know as soon as possible if you are interested in taking part. Reply to me at  secretary@scottishmvg.org    or give me a ring on 07712576932

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