Reply To: Port and Starboard Gangways

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Frank Scott

    Boat Hails were only required at night (by day the gangway staff were expected to be observant), and they were standardised

    Hail: ———— ‘Boat Ahoy’

    Person carried in boat ——————– Reply

    Royalty/ Head of State: ——————— ‘Standard’

    Flag Officer/ Commodore (broad pennant): ———— ‘Flag + name of flagship’

    Chief of Staff/ Captain of the Fleet: ————— ‘Staff + name of flagship’

    Commanding officer of a Ship: ———————– ‘Name of Ship’

    Other Officers: ———————————— ‘Aye, Aye’

    Officer of the Guard: ——————————- ‘Guard Boat’

    Any others: —————————————– ‘No, No’

    No mystery about any of this, all laid down in the Admiralty Manual of Seamanship (various editions since 1908), and well established long before that. Largely obsolete now that boats’ crews have decent radios.

    Frank Scott