The Royal Australian Navy (RAN) is the naval arm of the Australian Defence Force. Following federation of the Australian Colonies in 1901, the former colonial navies merged to become the Commonwealth Naval Forces. But this collection of elderly gun and torpedo boats was not yet a credible Navy, and the security of Australian waters continued to rest with the ships of the British Royal Navy.
Not until an Imperial Conference held in London in 1909 did Australian authorities finally decide to acquire their own self-contained ‘Fleet Unit,’ consisting of a battle cruiser, three light cruisers, six destroyers, three submarines, and a number of auxiliaries. With possession of an effective, ocean-going Navy, Australia would in future assume full responsibility for the protection of its own ports, shipping, and trade routes.
Such a step was the first for any Dominion Government and an important indication of Australia’s growing national maturity. Aware of the significance of its increased status, on July 10, 1911, King George V approved the use of the title “Royal” by the renamed Australian Navy and allowed its warships to wear the same White Ensign as those of the Royal Navy.
Today, the RAN is one of the most sophisticated and capable naval forces in the region with a significant and continuing presence in the three oceans that surround Australia and a worldwide reach in support of Australia’s military and diplomatic commitments overseas.
Brief and Execution:
To coincide with the centenary anniversary, the Royal Australian Navy appointed Faircount to produce its official commemorative publication entitled, 100 Years of the Royal Australian Navy. The publication was published with the full editorial support and cooperation of the Royal Australian Navy and designed to go hand in hand with the commemorative events staged to mark the occasion.