This photo was taken on one of the happiest days in the history of Tilbury.
It was April 1919 – just months after the end of the Great War – and it was the day that HMS Tilbury sailed into its namesake town.
Crowds of local workers, residents and schoolchildren, flocked in their hundreds to Tilbury Docks for the once in a lifetime chance to not only catch a glimpse of the ship – which had been named after the town – but to explore every nook and cranny of the 276 ft long vessel.
HMS Tilbury was one of 67 S Class destroyers built for the British Royal Navy during the First World War.
She was launched on June 17, 1918 and like all S class destroyers, was armed with guns and torpedoes.
Upon commission she was sent to the Mediterranean and was serving in Greece in the Aegean Sea at the end of the Great war.
On returning home her commander – Lieutenant-Commander Humphrey Maurice Robson DSO – was keen to bring her to her home port for a whistlestop visit.
The above article appeared in the Echo newspaper on Thursday, March 5, 2020 and is reproduced with their kind permission.