June 19 - 25, 2011: Issue 11 

 Above:  Superintendent Doreen Cruickshank, Commander of the NSW Police Northern Beaches Local Area and Commander Christine Clarke, CO of HMAS Kuttabul.

 Avalon Tattoo 18th of June, 2011
Navy, Army, Air Force and Rural Fire Service Cadets
Australian Defence Force Mine Warfare and Divers
28 Battery 7 Field Regiment
Defence Force Recruiting
Department of Veterans' Affairs
Huey Helicopter—ANL
NSW Sports Aircraft Association
Vietnam Veterans Motor Cycle Club

The Vietnam Bus
NSW Police Pipe Band
Australian Federal Police Pipe Band
Clan MacLeod Pipe Band
NSW Rural Fire Service Pipe Band
NSW Fire & Rescue Band and Marching Team
Royal Australian Navy Admiral's Band
Pittwater House School Band
Barrenjoey High School Band
Marta Maria High School Band
Pittwater Motor Enthusiasts
Pittwater Friends of Soibada
NSW Police
NSW Fire & Rescue
NSW Rural Fire Service
St John's Ambulance
Broken Bay Marine Rescue
French North Africa War Veterans

 Above: The Australian Federal Police Pipe Band, who performed at the Edinburgh Tattoo in 2010 and will do so again in 2012. 

Avalon Tattoo 

June 18th, 2011 

On Saturday 18th of June, 2011 the Avalon Tattoo was held at Dunbar Park. Governor of NSW, Professor Marie Bashir AC, CVO, made an honourary Commodore for this Event, described Pittwater as 'one of the most beautiful areas on our continent' before praising those who organised and particpated in the day.

"The Tattoo brings the Community together. It reminds us of the traditions of comradeship, discipline and working together." 

No one in our Services receives multi-million dollar bonuses at Christmas. Many spend a greater part of each year away from home and family in very dangerous situations, witnessing scenes they will never forget. Their aim, as reiterated by Major-General P Brereton, is to promote 'Stability, Security and Safety'. He also spoke of how the Cadets and Reservists showcased to the community at the Avalon Tattoo are a fine example of these organisations being the premier National Youth Development organisations.

Some consider our Navy, Army and Air Force in terms of 'Defence' forces. Those who are part of these organisations consider themselves to be 'in the Services'. What was apparent on Saturday is that not only are many of these Service-people physical giants, they are also, even when dimunitive, giants in moral stature, in perseverence and deeds. The uprightness witnessed in those marching clearly, on a one by one individual basis, also resides bone deep.

They, with thanks for a day that brought joy to our Community, are our Feature this week. You didn't have to be Scottish to appreciate the music and marching, there was something for young and old. It is great to see so many of the upcoming generation making an effort to better themselves and be the best they can be.

After a fantastic day at Dunbar Park, Avalon, locals are calling the Avalon Tattoo 'the little Edinburgh of Australia'. Everyone attending, from those barely a year old to our seniors, found the music, sunshine, displays of marching and vintage cars a delight. A wide range of Services people and organisations were on hand to educate visitors in what each specialised in from First Aid to Navy to Veteran's Affairs.HMAS Waterhen personnel gave away a cardboard model ship for the children to build at home. Across from their tentThe Vietnam Bus, a mobile museum of artifacts from Australian troops, helped us realise 500 Australians lost their lives in that conflict. An Iroquois Huey UH1H Helicopter proved a huge success with children who were allowed to sit in its seats and cockpit. One accidently pushed the Emergency Beacon on board and the organisors had Canberra calling them quite quickly, wondering what was going on.

250 local and NSW Navy, Army, Air Force and Rural Fire Service Cadets, the Australian Defence Force with a minewarfare  team and the divers in their display tank, the 28th Field Battery 7th Field Regiment, Defence Force Recruiting, Defence Housing, the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, Scottish Pipe Bands from NSW Police, Clan MacLeod, Rural Fire Service and Australian Federal Police particpated. A favourite with the crowd were the NSW Fire and Rescue Precision Marching Band. A lot of little girls joined in with the marchers and were welcomed, shown the steps. Community Service Organisations including the Fire and Rescue NSW, the NSW Rural Fire Service, the NSW Police, St John’s Ambulance, Marine Rescue, the Pittwater Motor Enthusiasts, the Pittwater Friends of Soibada (Timor Leste) and local bands and choirs entertained, informed and celebrated.

The “Freedom of Entry” ceremony was exercised this year by the 201 Army Cadet Unit, who are based at Dee Why. This centuries old tradition gives “the right of entry on Ceremonial Occasions in full panoply with swords drawn, bayonets fixed, drums beating, bands playing and Colours flying. The Challenge was made by Superintendent Doreen Cruickshank, Commander of the NSW Police Northern Beaches Local Area Command, in company with the Mayor of Pittwater, Harvey Rose. The 201 Army Cadet Unit have participated in all the previous Tattoos.

It was a long day for all those representing each branch of the Services but all were open, hospitable, friendly and just downright good folk from set-up to after sundown. There were a few father and son visitors from the Services represented. Martin and Lyn Cotterell from the Sydney Chapter of the Vietnam Veterans Motorcyle Club, with 82 members, said the Club's motto is 'Together Forever' and this could apply to all those representing each Service today.

The brilliant blue day closed with the traditional Massed Pipes and Drums Finale and Lone Piper of the Sunset Ceremony just as the cold fresh winds of winter quickly moved the sun's warmth from the green. As Robert Stokes MP remarked in his quick thanks to all involved, "Not only did it sound like Scotland, it felt like Scotland."

Eagle One Iroquois Huey UH1H at Avalon Tattoo

Photos and 'Video'

201 Army Cadet Unit (Dee Why)

305 Squadron of Air Force Cadet (Collaroy)

Navy Cadets website

Report and Pictures by A J Guesdon, 2011.