Crowds greet crew of HMS Liverpool in city

Image caption,
Officers and crew assembled at Exchange Flags behind the town hall

Hundreds of people gathered on the streets around Liverpool Town Hall to watch the crew of HMS Liverpool march through the city.

The Royal Navy vessel, usually based in Portsmouth, arrived at the Cruise Liner Terminal on Thursday and will be docked in the Mersey until Monday.

It is the last major visit to Merseyside, where she was built, ahead of decommissioning next year.

The crew of the Type-42 destroyer was given freedom of the city in 1983.

Earlier on Friday, the crew and officers paraded through the streets, exercising their freedom of the city, to Our Lady and St Nicholas' Church.

They then marched with bayonets fixed, drums beating and Colours flying.

'Emotional day'

Capt Ian Davies, director of music at the Royal Marines band, Scotland, helped lead the parade.

He said: "There were great crowds, very appreciative of the sailors and we've had great fun. We've loved coming down to do this.

Image caption,
HMS Liverpool will be based in its home city until Monday

"We are musicians first and foremost and music is all about emotion - and it [the parade] does move you."

Leading chef Thomas Kirk said he was pleased to be seeing the city after five months on the vessel.

"It's been really good. A lovely day - fantastic to walk through the streets and see everybody cheering and clapping as we walked through.

"The public support was really good today and that's what we like to see."

Later, they took part in a civic reception alongside the Lord Mayor, Hazel Williams.

The vessel will be open to the public on Saturday and Sunday afternoon and will host tours for school children, college students, sea cadets and charity groups.

HMS Liverpool was built by Cammell Laird of Birkenhead and is the tenth of the class of Type-42 Destroyers and the seventh ship to bear the name.

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