August 5, 2015
Hermione is warmly greeted dockside by more than 1,000 dignitaries, residents and visitors in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada, on July 18, 2015. Photo Credit: Ambassade de France au Canada
Celebrating the longstanding historic ties between Acadia and France during Hermione’s brief stopover in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, on July 18, 2015. Photo Credit: Ambassade de France au Canada
The Hermione begins her voyage home to France, departing Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, July 19, 2015. Photo Credit: Ambassade de France au Canada
Escorted by the Canadian Coast Guard and a score of private sailboats and motorboats, Hermione made a triumphant arrival at the port of Lunenburg in Nova Scotia, Canada, on July 18, 2015. The port is home to the famed Canadian tall ship, Bluenose II, which had the honor of leading the Hermione to Lunenburg’s harbor.
There, more than 1,000 residents, dignitaries and visitors enthusiastically cheered the Hermione as she docked in the historic fishing village, which is 57 miles southwest of the province’s capital, Halifax. Her docking at the wharf at Lunenburg’s Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic was an extraordinary feat accomplished by none other than the Hermione’s seasoned Captain Yann Cariou and his crew, as the Lunenburg’s harbormaster announced to the public gathered dockside to much applause that the Hermione was the largest ship to dock at that Lunenburg pier yet.
Then, there were a series of speeches from the official welcoming committee including: Nicolas Chapuis, French Ambassador to Canada; Suzanne Lohnes-Croft of the Nova Scotia House of Assembly for Lunenburg representing the Canadian Prime Minister; Cédric Gautier, Président Stelia Aerospace; Olivier Casenave-Péré, Président, DCNS Canada; Her Worship Mayor of Lunenburg Rachel Bailey; M. Gerald Keddy, Member of the Canadian Parliament; Monsieur Vincent Hommeril, Consul General of France in the Atlantic Provinces; and Rear-Admiral John Newton. Also present were: Senator Louis Duvernois, M. Benoit Bourque, Member of the Canadian Legislative Assembly, M. René Cormier, Président de la Société Nationale de l’Acadie, and Judi Kilachand, Executive Director, Friends of Hermione-Lafayette in America.
In his remarks, Ambassador Chapuis noted the historical role that the Hermione played in the naval battle of Louisbourg, off present-day Cape Breton, near Sydney, almost 234 years to the day, where the French were victorious over the British; he also commended the present-day governmental and regional alliances between France and Canada. The Ambassador concluded by noting that the return of the 21st century Hermione to Nova Scotia in 2015 also brought forth mention of the historic importance of Acadia in the two countries’ history.
Picking up on that historical theme, M. René Cormier, Président de la Société Nationale de l’Acadie, reminded the audience that Nova Scotia was once called Acadie and Lunenburg was Mirliguèche, noting that the vibrant cultural and linguistic traditions of both the English and French merit respect of all peoples, especially in Canada’s eastern maritime provinces of Labrador, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, Newfoundland, and, of course, Nova Scotia.
After a lively musical performance by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Band, there were a host of dockside entertainments, including a dance performance accompanied by a trio of RCMP bagpipers.
On Sunday, July 19, 2015, the Hermione departed Canada, stopping at Saint-Pierre and Miquelon, two French islands in the northwest Atlantic, before continuing on its return voyage back to France.
The Hermione will be in Brest, France from August 10-to-17, 2015, to be visited by the public, and then it will join the city of Bordeaux from August 20-to-26, 2015. The frigate will return to its home city of Rochefort on August 29, 2015 and will be open to the public from August 31, 2015.