Monday, June 6, 2011

Is 'Canadian Navy' even possible without the Queen's permission?

I have never been able to answer the following hypothetical:

If as the Minister of Defence has admitted below that the Royal designation has never been taken away - right he is on that, only the Sovereign can do that, and the Queen has not revoked it for the navy or for the air force - how is it that the government could officially call Maritime Command the 'Canadian Navy', unless it also intended to ask the Queen to rescind the royal proclamation that made the Naval Service of Canada the Royal Canadian Navy on August 29, 1911?

All answers would be appreciated.


  1. The government could do it, but it would have to speak out of both sides of its mouth. Even while calling it the 'Canadian Navy' they would have to admit that the Royal was never taken away. It would officially be the (Royal) Canadian Navy.

    I don't believe for a minute that this will be the case for this government, but that's the only way I can see it happening if it did.

  2. This post is very helpful, in describing how Royal designations do not expire, even as organizations may evolve, merge and change their names and structures. I would infer from Chris McCreery's expertise that the first commenter is probably right.

  3. I'm still not sure I buy it. Perhaps a courtesy call has already been made to HM to let her know the Government's take on the issue. Even if it was determined that HM's formal permission was not required again, I can't see the harm in getting it anyway. Is there any conceivable reason she would say no?

  4. I can't see that HM The Queen's permission is required again, given that "Royal" honours do not expire. But it would be classy to ask her...
    Here's an idea - why not reintroduce the RCN when Prince William and Kate come for their official visit in July? The timing and optics (new generation of Royalty and continued relevance), couldn't be better...

  5. Concur. My fingers are crossed.

  6. Things take time, especially for a new government. I don't think it is realistic for the government to be ready in time for the royal couples' visit, but the 100th anniversary of the naming of RCN on Aug 29, 2011 is probably doable.

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The Petition moves along...

May 1: Laurie Hawn, M.P. agrees to support petition
April 30: Sent draft petition to The Dominion Institute to seek their sponsorship
April 28: Sent draft petition to Captain(N) Pickingford, Project Manager, Canadian Navy Centennial Project
April 27: Sent petition to Blaine Barker of the Royal Canadian Naval Association and Bob Nixon of the Naval Officer's Association of Canada and Peter Dawe, Executive Director of the RMC Club
April 26: The Monarchist League of Canada members are supportive
April 25: Interesting - even heated - debate over at the Navy, Army, Air Force Forum, where the "Yeas" have it by a two-thirds majority.