HMS Ceres (RNR) and The Leeds No.1 Royal Naval Association have been affiliated for a number of years. We attend many events together and it is seen to be valuable experience for the young sailors to meet the veterans of the Royal Navy. The young sailors are amazed that the camaraderie is just the same today as it was many years ago.
We meet annually at the associations Trafalgar Night Dinner, the annual Army verses Navy rugby match at Twickenham and Remembrance Sunday.
The RNA branch were guests of HMS Ceres when they were commissioned by The Princess Royal in September 2015.
HMS Ceres History
The former HMS Ceres was a Royal Naval Reserve (RNR) unit in Yeadon, West Yorkshire which was decommissioned in 1995 in the wake of the Options for Change restructuring programme.
In 1999 the decision was made to re-establish a Royal Naval Reserve presence in West Yorkshire and a satellite unit named Calder Division was opened in Batley to train communications ratings, although the temporary nature of the accommodation and limited equipment led to recruitment and retention difficulties. An alternative building, Carr Lodge, was found within Carlton Barracks, Leeds and underwent refurbishment providing modern facilities.
The unit was renamed Ceres Division and was officially opened by Rear Admiral K. John Borley, Flag Officer Training and Recruitment, on 14 May 2005 with a guard paraded by its then-parent unit, HMS Sherwood, and music provided by the Band of HM Royal Marines, Scotland.
A plan to refurbish and extend Carr Lodge was approved with work completed in 2015 on a new two-storey training wing with state-of-the-art classrooms, enlarged changing rooms and an accommodation block with permanent bed spaces. Previous works had added a storage facility and a galley.
On a visit to the unit on 21 May 2015 the Head of the Maritime Reserves, Commodore Andrew Jameson, announced that Ceres Division would be commissioned, becoming the sixth HMS Ceres on 1 September 2015. The unit was formally commissioned on 6 February 2016 by The Princess Royal who dedicated the new facilities. A Royal Guard paraded with the RNR Queen’s Colour of the Royal Navy and music was provided by the Band of HM Royal Marines, Plymouth.