Vietnam reunion to receive Key to the City

Published: Friday, 11 October 2019 at 2:46:34 PM

For the first time ever, the City of Albany are granting the Key to the City with the honour symbolising free entry to the City to be bestowed on the 17 Construction Squadron Workshop Vietnam Association next week.

The Key to the City is a symbolic ceremony and represents the highest honour that a City can confer on an individual or an organisation and will take place on Wednesday, October 16.

Starting on York Street, a march will make its way to the Town Hall where His Worship the Mayor of Albany Dennis Wellington will present the Key to the City to the Commanding Officer of the Association, together with a symbolic scroll recording this historic occasion.

The 17 Construction Squadron Workshop Vietnam Association Commanding Officer will accept the Key to the City on behalf of the Association, who will then make their way down York Street to the Albany War Memorial for a memorial service, led by the 10th Light Horse Troop Albany.

Mayor Wellington said granting the Key to the City was a privilege of the City of Albany and honours a tradition that goes back to the medieval era, with the ‘key’ symbolising the political relationship between a city and the King, Queen or ruler of the land on which the city was located.

“Military history plays a huge role in Albany’s culture and has shaped our brand as a City and what we represent today,” he said.

“It is humbling to see that in 2019 the traditions of our forefathers still hold a place in the community and our culture as we honour those who have served before us and respect those that continue to serve today.”

The 47-man strong 17 Construction Squadron Workshop was deployed to South Vietnam in April 1966 to maintain the equipment of the 17 Construction Squadron Australian Engineers such as bulldozers, tippers, graders and other plant and equipment.

In 1988 the 17 Construction Squadron Vietnam Association was formed in Canberra and its 12th reunion is being held in Albany from 14th to 18th October with up to 130 veterans and their partners attending.

The Key to the City march will take place on York Street from 10am on Wednesday, October 16.

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