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HMCS HAIDA: A New Chapter
Noted author and professor of Canadian Naval history Barry Gough narrates this one hour documentary following the Canadian WWII TRibal Class Destroyer the HMCS HAIDA through its retrofit examining it’s significant role in Canada’s storied naval history. Enjoy never before seen footage of the H.M.C.S. Haida on what will likely be her last trip to sea.
She is the last remaining example of the 27 Tribal Class destroyers built for the Royal Canadian Navy, the Royal Navy and the Royal Australian Navy between 1937 and 1945. It has been said that The Tribals were "magnificent in appearance, majestic in movement and menacing in disposition". Technologically, they represented the most advanced naval architecture, marine propulsion systems and weaponry of their time.
In late November of 2002, Canada’s most decorated warship was handed over by the Provincial government of Ontario to Parks Canada. Parks Canada declared HMCS Haida an official park. This park was in need of assistance.
The years as a naval museum at Ontario Place had taken its toll on the Tribal Class Destroyer. The hull was falling apart and soon she would be unsafe to board. The efforts of former Heritage Minister, Shelia Copps, secured financing to tow the great ship to Port Weller Dry Docks in St. Catharines. Here, she would spend the next nine months undergoing an intensive "re-fit" before finally arriving in her new home in Hamilton.
A re-fit such as this was not without conflict. The issues as to preserving her integrity were at hand. It is from this matter that the meaning of Haida is explored. Why was she so important? What are her credentials? What does she represent to the veterans, and what will she signify to future generations?