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UK Royal Navy to kick start Olympic torch race

Organizers said Saturday the flame will stay a night at a Royal Navy air base in Culdrose, Cornwall, before it is flown to Land's End — the most westerly point in England — in a search and rescue helicopter.
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Royal Navy
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British sailor still missing

British sailor still missing | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

A British sailor has gone missing in Dubai while his ship, HMS Westminster was docked there for a visit, the Royal Navy says.

 

Leading Seaman Timothy Andrew MacColl, 27, from Gosport in Hampshire, was last seen getting into a taxi at 02:00 local time on Sunday 27th May 2012 after a night out.

Mike McNamara's insight:

Timothy MacColl has now been missing for over 1,760 days or over Four and a half Years.


Our thoughts continue to go out to his wife Rachael and Family who are still waiting for any news of his whereabouts.


Will he ever be found?


MOBILE Users: - Please scroll down for more of today's News

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Second man held over murder of car theft victim Mike Samwell in Manchester

Second man held over murder of car theft victim Mike Samwell in Manchester | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
A second man has been arrested on suspicion of the murder of a man who was killed by burglars who ran him over in his own car.

The suspect, 20, was detained on Wednesday by police hunting those behind the death of Mike Samwell, 35, who died in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Mr Samwell had been chasing intruders from his £500,000 home in Chorlton, Manchester, after they broke in while he and his wife Jess were asleep upstairs.

The former Royal Navy officer went outside and was run down as thieves drove off in his Audi S3.

He was pronounced dead in hospital around an hour later.

The second suspect, from south Manchester, remains in police custody for questioning, Greater Manchester Police said.

A 21-year-old man arrested on suspicion of murder on Monday has been released on bail.

On Tuesday, Mr Samwell's family said his death had left a "huge hole in our lives that can never be filled".

The tribute said: "Mike was the most wonderful husband, brother and son. He would do anything for anyone and was an ever-dependable and generous family member and friend to so many."

The stolen car was recovered by police badly damaged and abandoned three miles away in the Ladybarn area of Manchester.

Detectives are looking for information about a blue five-door BMW 1 Series seen in the area, which is believed to have been used by the offenders after the incident.
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How a petite Navy Wren was murdered by a seven foot loner

How a petite Navy Wren was murdered by a seven foot loner | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

She was a petite 23-year-old enjoying life as a Royal Navy Wren photographer in Plymouth. He was a seven-foot one inch tall, unemployed loner living in a flat in Stonehouse.

And when their paths tragically crossed in April 1997, Tammy Williams would end up being murdered, her body callously hidden in a cupboard.

Tammy had fulfilled a life-long ambition to follow in her mother’s footsteps and join the Royal Navy.

She signed up aged 17 in 1990 and became one of the first women to take up a sea posting, maintaining missiles on HMS Norfolk and HMS Brazen.

Tammy was murdered 20 years ago

And when that post came to an end, she changed jobs to become a service photographer after taking a course at HMS Heron in Yeovilton, Somerset.

On the night of April 26, 1997, she had been out in the city with friends, wearing a new dress she had bought that day.


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Royal Navy warship sails through the Bosphorus into Putin’s Black Sea back yard

Royal Navy warship sails through the Bosphorus into Putin’s Black Sea back yard | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

A ROYAL Navy warship has been pictured sailing through the Bosphorus and into the Black Sea – Vladimir Putin’s back yard.

The move comes just months after sabre-rattling Putin sent his rustbucket navy steaming through the English Channel within sight of the White Cliffs of Dover on its way to Syria.
British Royal Navy destroyer sets sail in the Bosphorus, on its way to the Black Sea, in Istanbul

British Royal Navy destroyer sets sail in the Bosphorus, on its way to the Black Sea, in Istanbul. The move is believed to be payback for payback for the Russian navy’s repeated recent provocations

HMS Severn tracked the Korolev, which Forces TV reports is believed to be heading back to Russia following deployment in the Mediterranean.

Earlier this month Royal Navy vessels tailed Russian warships as they provocatively steamed through the English Channel for the third time in six months.

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Eccleshall man celebrates his formal commissioning into the Royal Navy in front of Duke of York

Eccleshall man celebrates his formal commissioning into the Royal Navy in front of Duke of York | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
ECCLESHALL'S Christopher Yates, 22, celebrated his formal commissioning as a Royal Navy Officer at a parade attended by The Duke of York.

Midshipman Christopher was among 155 Officer Cadets taking part in Lord High Admiral's Divisions at Britannia Royal Naval College (BRNC).

Around 800 families, friends and distinguished guests, watched as His Royal Highness inspected the parade as the representative of his father, His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, The Lord High Admiral.

To earn his place on the parade ground, Christopher completed an intensive 30-week training course, which was split into three distinct 10-week phases. While the course predominately takes place at the world renowned College in Dartmouth, the training includes a three-week ship acquaint when Christopher was assigned to the Royal Navy's flagship, HMS Ocean which was on a six-month deployment as part of the Joint Expeditionary Force (Maritime) Task Group, taking command of Allied operations in the Middle East.
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Spectacular display in Tiverton as Royal Navy's HMS Enterprise crew comes to town

Spectacular display in Tiverton as Royal Navy's HMS Enterprise crew comes to town | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

HMS Enterprise's crew will be providing a spectacle in Tiverton next week when they exercise the freedom of the town.

The Royal Navy vessel returned home to Plymouth after three years away on Tuesday, April 18 and her crew of more than 50 will be joined by the Royal Marine Corps of Drums and members of Tiverton Sea Cadets in parading through Tiverton at 2pm on Sunday, April 30.

The crew will form at Tiverton Pannier Market and parade with the Queen's Colour in full ceremonial uniform with swords and rifles fitted with bayonets. Once formed up, the mayor will inspect the crew and speak to members of the ship's company. He will also give a speech as will the ship's commanding officer. Once the inspection is complete they will parade around the town, passing the mayor and offering him salute. The crew will then return to the Pannier Market where they will fall out.

HMS Enterprise has been affiliated with Tiverton for her whole life in service, beginning when she was commissioned in October 2003. A part of this affiliation was the granting of the freedom of the city by the town council.

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UK MoD negotiates £1.4bn contract for Royal Navy's sixth Astute-class submarine

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has negotiated a £1.4bn contract for the delivery of the Royal Navy's new Agamemnon Astute-class submarine, which will be deployed to protect the country's new aircraft carriers and nuclear deterrent.

Agamemnon is the sixth in a total fleet of seven Astute-class nuclear-powered vessels, which are the largest and most advanced submarines ever to enter service with the British Royal Navy.

UK Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said: “This latest investment means we are well on our way to completing our fleet of Astute submarines.

“These are the most advanced submarines ever operated by the Royal Navy and are already providing unprecedented levels of stealth and attack capability across the world.”

BAE Systems began construction of the 7,400t, 97m-long Agamemnon in 2012 at Devonshire Dock Hall in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, along with the fifth submarine Anson and the future as-of-yet unnamed seventh vessel.

The first three submarines of the same class, HMS Astute, Ambush and Artful, are already in service with the Royal Navy. The fourth boat, Audacious, was officially christened in December 2016 and is expected to be launched this year.
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Farewell to Dockyard crests

Farewell to Dockyard crests | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
The last of Dockyard’s historic naval emblems have been painted over as part of the major renovation project on the South Basin.

For decades navy crews proudly painted their ships’ crest on the concrete walls surrounding the South Yard where the vessels berthed.

Between 1951 and 1995 scores of vessels from across the world passed through Bermuda and left their mark in the West End.

Over the years the crests have faded away and many of the emblems have been repainted by volunteers.

However, last week the last of the crests were whitewashed as part of the upgrade. Edward Harris, director of the National Museum, revealed that all the crests had been photographed and were available on the museum’s website.

“Some dockyard heritage has been lost in the clearing of the South Yard of the old Royal Naval Dockyard for the erection of buildings for the teams competing in the America’s Cup and the last of the unique ships’ crests have now been painted over,” Dr Harris said.

“However, all of the crests have been professionally photographed and will eventually be available for viewing on the National Museum website.

“In addition, Moresby House, the old headquarters of HMS Malabar of the North American and West Indies Station is being saved and renovated and will soon overlook the South Yard and all the America’s Cup activities in considerable splendour, thanks to a grant from the Government.

“It is hoped that other legacy projects in Bermuda will result as part of the America’s Cup events at Bermuda.”

The South Yard was built in Dockyard between 1901 and 1910 to accommodate the larger ships that were becoming more commonplace across the world. Between the 1920s and the 1940s the yard was used for basic repairs on passing naval ships.

This continued throughout the Second World War while Bermuda was used as a base for the Allied forces. The South Yard remained the Royal Navy’s base in Bermuda for the next four decades.

In 1985 the South Basin was dredged to allow nuclear submarines to come into the South Yard and ten years later the Royal Navy left Bermuda and the South Yard was handed over to the Bermuda Government.

Scores of naval ships left their mark in the South Yard between 1951 and 1995 including well known vessels such as HMS Brilliant and HMS Londonderry that have since been decommissioned.

And even before then in April 1943 HMS Argonaut famously called into the South Yard for repairs after having her entire stern and part of her bow blown off by an Italian submarine.
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Royal Marines to lose 200 posts

Royal Marines to lose 200 posts | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

The Royal Marines will lose 200 posts as the Royal Navy seeks to reshuffle its staff before the arrival of a new generation of vessels.

Admiral Sir Philip Jones, the first sea lord, said the force would make the cuts as part of its efforts to “adapt to meet the challenges of a dangerous and uncertain world” as it introduces new ships, submarines and aircraft to the service.

It is not thought that any Marines will be made redundant; the Navy will rely on natural wastage of staff for the overhaul.

The National Audit Office warned last month that the force was facing a staffing crisis before the completion of the first of two new aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth. It said the shortage of engineers, intelligence personnel and warfighting specialists in the Navy and RAF air crew could delay the deployment of the carriers.

Jones said he knew how vital the marines were as “the UK’s premier high readiness contingency force”, but added: “I also know we must adapt to meet the challenges of a dangerous and uncertain world.”

“The government is investing in a new generation of ships, submarines and aircraft. As we introduce these capabilities into service, we must ensure we have the right mix of skills across each of the Navy’s fighting arms to optimise how we use them, and the commandant general and I have sought to find the right balance between sailors and marines in responding to this challenge.

“The Royal Marines remain bound into every part of the Royal Navy’s future, from conducting sophisticated operations from the sea, at a variety of scales and against a range of threats, using our new aircraft carriers as a base, to leading the service’s development of information warfare. They will continue to be as vital to the defence of the realm in the years ahead as they have been for the past 350.

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Royal Navy's flagship HMS Ocean could be sold to Brazil

Royal Navy's flagship HMS Ocean could be sold to Brazil | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

The Ministry of Defence has confirmed that it is considering selling the Royal Navy's flagship HMS Ocean to another government, following reports the Plymouth-based warship could be snapped up by Brazil.

It's been reported that Brazillan naval chiefs are keen to buy the 21,500 tonne vessel, based HM Naval Base Devonport, after she is decommissioned by the Royal Navy next year.

According to Brazilian media, government officials said they believe the asking price, which has not been disclosed, is "reasonable" and that they were looking at the possible purchase "with cautious optimism".

The Ministry of Defence said a "number of options are being considered", adding that selling the vessel to another government was a possibility.

The news comes just months after the light aircraft carrier HMS Illustrious, affectionately known as Lusty, was sold by the MoD to a recycling centre in Turkey for just £2million.

In November 2015, the MoD confirmed HMS Ocean will be decommissioned in 2018 - despite undergoing a £65million refit in 2014- as part of cost saving measures with no like-for-like replacement.

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This is where UK's Navy will park its 75,000-ton aircraft carriers

This is where UK's Navy will park its 75,000-ton aircraft carriers | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

The UK Ministry of Defence has spent around £200m rebuilding a jetty at HM Naval Base Portsmouth ready for the arrival of HMS Queen Elizabeth later this year. El Reg got invited to watch an American supply ship test it out.

As the picture further down this story shows, the planned exercise involving US Naval Service ship Robert E Peary was postponed because of fog – leaving a rather cold and soggy press pack standing around gazing at... well, damp concrete.

And what a load of concrete it was. The two new jetties for the UK’s two new aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales, has cost Blighty’s taxpayers the thick end of £100m. The one we were shown was built on top of various older structures dating back to the 1920s, as Captain Iain Greenlees RN, HMNB Portsmouth's infrastructure lead told The Register.

VolkerStevin engineer Gerrit Smit added that around 220 piles had to be sunk into the harbour floor to support the giant concrete raft, which moves up and down an inch or so as the tide ebbs and flows. One of the new jetties will be used as a “pit stop” for the active carrier, while the other will be optimised for longer stays; the rough idea is that once each ship passes her sea trials, one will be deployed while the other sits in reserve. Extensive dredging work is still being done at Portsmouth to ensure the carriers can manoeuvre safely, with a German WWII bomb being fished up from the deep just three weeks ago.


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UK Cuts Royal Marines' Budget to Fund Carriers

UK Cuts Royal Marines' Budget to Fund Carriers | Royal Navy | Scoop.it


In order to finance the operation of its two new carriers, the Royal Navy plans to turn one of the Royal Marines' three front line commando units into a support outfit. According to new plans first reported by The Times, 42 Commando will be reduced in size and given a role in training exercises and support for 40 and 45 Commando. In addition, all overseas training for the remaining units will be suspended.

“Without any declaration, almost by stealth, we have gone from a claim to have something that operates at formation level and at global reach to something which can never again be a sustained land operation," a former officer told The Times. He noted that the Royal Navy needs 200 more sailors to man the new carriers, a number that closely matches the personnel reduction at 42 Commando.

“The naval service is refiguring itself in the image that it wants, which is a large capital platform navy comprised of carriers, some new hunter-killer submarines and the nuclear capability,” he said. “Everything else, the Devil takes the hindmost.”

The cut to the services' amphibious assault units follows an earlier decision to retire the Marines’ helicopter landing platform HMS Ocean, the nation's current flagship. In 2015, the Royal Navy decided to accelerate the Ocean’s retirement to 2018, despite a recent upgrade. In addition, the service’s amphibs, the HMS Albion and the HMS Bulwark, have operated on a rotating schedule since 2011, when Albion downgraded her readiness and entered a shipyard period. Bulwark's crew have recently transferred over to the refurbished Albion, which will take over as the Royal Navy's sole "very high readiness" amphibious assault ship.


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Revamped warship leaves dockyard for the first time in six years

Revamped warship leaves dockyard for the first time in six years | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

A Plymouth-based Navy warship has sailed out of the naval base for the first time in six years following a major refit.

HMS Albion has moved from her temporary home inside the dockyard walls at HM Naval Base Devonport to her new tidal berth on the river.

The re-positioning of the the 20,000-tonne amphibious warship, which recently welcomed aboard her new captain, marks a significant milestone in her regeneration schedule.

Since 2011, the ship has been alongside in Devonport at extended readiness, and over the past two years she's undergone a multi-million refit.

HMS Albion's new captain, Tim Neild, said: "It's great to see HMS Albion back on her tidal berth and marks a significant milestone in the refit project.

"We are on track to complete the project by the summer– a testament to the hard work and professional pride poured in to the ship by a combined Royal Navy, Babcock and DE&S [Defence Equipment and Support] team effort.''

Babcock warships director Stuart Leonard said: "Moving HMS Albion from the basin to her new home on the tidal berth marks another significant milestone in her refit.

"The move follows the successful completion of an extensive trials period culminating in the commissioning of the ship's main engines.

"Our dedicated and committed joint Babcock and Royal Navy team will now focus on the final preparations for the ship to go back into service in the summer."

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Naval commander found hanged, family 'questioned about Trident'

Naval commander found hanged, family 'questioned about Trident' | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

Military officials quizzed a grieving family about "Trident" after a depressed naval commander from Somerset committed suicide, an inquest heard yesterday.

Commander Christopher Smith, 47, a Royal Navy weapons engineer, who lived in Clevedon with his wife Sarah, was found hanged in a flat in Bristol, after he "struggled on and off with bouts of depression", it was heard.

But his father Dr John Smith said he did not believe his son had taken his own life, and the doctor's wife started making her own inquiries, it was said.

The Bristol Post reports that Cdr Smith's family believe that his death was linked to the stress of the Trident nuclear weapons project.

The inquest heard half an hour after returning home from speaking to long-term friends and colleagues two naval officers turned up on their doorstep.

Dr Smith said the pair, whose names were not given at the inquest, asked her why she had been asking after Chris and why she had mentioned the word "Trident".

In a statement, he added: "She gave them no answer to their questions and after, shut the door on them. How did they know this, and what was their intended motive?

"I think these are all relevant points, apart from which he had been rewarded through accelerated promotions all through his naval career - from a lieutenant to a lieutenant commander to a full commander.

"He was at the peak of a brilliant engineering career. Why would he have thrown all that away?

"During his naval service, he had worked, at times, with intelligence services both abroad and at home.

"I will never believe that he committed suicide. Other possibilities should seriously be considered."


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St Albans officer cadet attends Royal Parade

St Albans officer cadet attends Royal Parade | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
St Albans royal navy officer celebrates her formal commissioning at a parade attended by the Duke of York.

Midshipman Katherine Butler, 22, was one of 155 officer cadets taking part in the annual Lord High Admiral’s Divisions at Britannia Royal Naval College.

Around 800 families and friends gathered at the parade, watching the Duke of York represent his father the Duke of Edinburgh, the Lord High Admiral.

To earn her place at the parade, Butler completed a 30 week intensive training course, which included a three-week ship acquaint assigned to the Royal Navy’s flagship, the HMS Ocean, taking command of allied operations in the Middle East.

With the first phase of her training complete Katherine will remain at Britannia Royal Naval College to begin her specialist training.

Katherine said: “I have really enjoyed my training at BRNC and am looking forward to moving on and starting my career specific training.

“I have learnt a lot at the College, not only about the Royal Navy and my future career, but also what I enjoy doing and how to lead and learn. I want to make a difference and have variety in the day to day working environment.”
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Russian warship tracked by HMS Severn off Plymouth coastline

Russian warship tracked by HMS Severn off Plymouth coastline | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

The Royal Navy has escorted another Russian warship through the English Channel, just 60 miles off the coast of Plymouth.

HMS Severn was pulled away from her fishery protection operation to track the ship as she approached, reports Forces TV.

The huge landing ship, capable of carrying 170 troops and 24 armoured fighting vehicles, has been on deployment in the eastern Mediterranean and is now believed to be heading back towards Russia.

This is the second escort task of a Russian warship for the Royal Navy during April.

Just eight days previously HMS Sutherland monitored two corvettes, a tanker and a tug through the Channel.

The Type 23 frigate HMS Sutherland located the two Russian ships in the early hours of Friday, April 14 as they sailed through the North Sea towards the Dover Straits.

The news comes at a time of incresing tensions between Russia and NATO.

Earlier this month Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and his French counterpart Jean-Marc Ayrault accused Russia and Iran of hiding details of the alleged use of chemical weapons in Syria.

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Police arrest man over Manchester car theft murder

Police arrest man over Manchester car theft murder | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
A man has been arrested over the murder of a former Royal Navy officer who was run over in his own car after confronting thieves outside his home.

Michael Samwell, 35, and his wife, Jessica, were woken by a loud bang outside their home in Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester, at around 3am on Sunday, police said.

The former navy engineer raced downstairs to disturb the thieves but suffered fatal injuries when they sped off in his Audi S3.

DS Jon Chadwick from GMP’s serious crime division said: “We have arrested a 21-year-old man in connection with Mike Samwell’s senseless murder.

“Our investigation is still in its early stages and we are still appealing for the public to help us. My thoughts continue to be with Mike’s family and friends at this devastating time.”

Police believe Samwell was run over at least once as he tried to prevent the theft of his car. He was found in the parking area at the back of his house with serious injuries, and was taken to hospital, where he died a short time later.

The black Audi S3 was later found abandoned three miles away in Whitby Avenue, Ladybarn, with extensive damage.

Chadwick described the crime as the murder of an innocent man who “merely sought to protect his property from criminals”.

Friends paid tribute to the former engineer they described as “one-in-a-million”, as neighbours in the affluent suburb reacted with shock at the killing.

A neighbour who lived opposite Samwell said it was the second Audi stolen from the street in a month. “It’s a really quiet residential street; it’s not the sort of thing that you would expect to happen, but there have been car thefts before on the street,” said the neighbour, who would only give his name as John.

“Because it’s a nice area, it’s an affluent area, people will come in unfortunately and people do come in from other parts of Manchester and target us.”

Samwell trained as a naval officer at Britannia Royal Naval College in Devon and spent around a decade in the service before leaving in 2014. His wife and family have been left devastated by his death, police said.
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Plymouth's HMS Enterprise is coming home after three years at sea

Plymouth's HMS Enterprise is coming home after three years at sea | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

The Royal Navy's HMS Enterprise is returning home today after an epic 35-month deployment sailing across the globe and saving thousands of lives at sea.

In almost three years, the Devonport-based survey ship has steamed 150,000 nautical miles, visited 20 countries, and navigated four of the seven seas while conducting maritime security operations, protecting Britain's economy and rescuing people in danger.

Enterprise was at the heart of operations to prevent people smuggling in the Mediterranean.

She evacuated more than 200 British citizens from Libya, rescued 9,180 people attempting to undertake deadly crossings of the Mediterranean and destroyed 117 unseaworthy vessels used by people traffickers.

HMS Enterprise played a key role in rescuing migrants in the Mediterranean

Minister of State for the Armed Forces Mike Penning said: "During her three years deployed away from the UK, HMS Enterprise and her ship's company have helped make the world a safer place.

"From disrupting people smuggling in the Mediterranean to assisting in the free flow of trade in the Gulf, and from providing reassurance to our overseas territories to surveying the world's oceans, she has epitomised how the Royal Navy is protecting the UK's global interests."

The ship, and her crew of 78 sailors, are due to return to Devonport tomorrow - Tuesday - to a warm welcome from friends and families.

The ship operates on a three-watch manning system, meaning two thirds of the ship's company have been on board at any one time.

"The crew of HMS Enterprise are justly proud of the work they have done since deploying, and the wide variety of operations will be hard to match in the rest of our careers," said Commander Philip Harper, the ship's commanding officer.

"At the same time, we are all really looking forward to coming home. The results of our deployment speak for themselves and we are all eager to spend some time with our families before the ship deploys again later this year."

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Work On Fifth Royal Navy’s Offshore Patrol Vessel Begins

Work On Fifth Royal Navy’s Offshore Patrol Vessel Begins | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
Work has officially begun in Scotland on HMS Spey, the fifth ship in a fleet of new Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs) being built for the Royal Navy.

Like four other ships HMS Forth, HMS Medway, HMS Trent and HMS Tamar, which are all either under construction or preparing for sea trials, HMS Spey will be built at Govan before the ship is transferred to the Scotstoun yard, where the ship will be fitted out for operations.

Minister for Defence Procurement, Harriett Baldwin, said, “The on-going successful delivery of these ships is a key element of the Government’s ten-year, £178 billion equipment plan to provide the UK’s armed forces with the kit they deserve.”

HMS Spey, which will be 90 metres long and displace around 2,000 tonnes, is one of two ships being built under a £287 million agreement signed between the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and BAE Systems in December 2016. The ship is due to be delivered to the Royal Navy in 2019 and enter service by 2021.

The ship is expected to carry a 30mm cannon and a flight deck capable of receiving a Merlin helicopter, in support of counter-terrorism, anti-piracy, anti-smuggling and maritime defence operations.

Batch 2 Offshore Patrol Vessels have a maximum speed of 24 knots and can sail 5,500 nautical miles before having to resupply.
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Warship, Channel 4: a no-frills account of life aboard the HMS Ocean – review

Warship, Channel 4: a no-frills account of life aboard the HMS Ocean – review | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

I have only fleeting recollections of Sailor, the hit Seventies TV series about life aboard HMS Ark Royal. But it left an abiding impression of naval power, and its theme tune – Rod Stewart’s Sailing – lives on in memory and pops up whenever a series such as Warship (Channel 4) appears on screen.

Forty years on, this three-parter is attempting to do something similar aboard HMS Ocean, the Royal Navy’s current flagship. But this vessel seemed not to ct the magnificence and might of that great service so much as its decline. Setting off on a seven-month deployment through the Mediterranean and on to the Persian Gulf, the portrait captured was of a hugely committed crew nursing along a ship that wasn’t fit for purpose.

Within an hour of leaving Plymouth one of the two massive engines failed. “She’s quite hard work,” said the chief engineer cheerily as a voice-over explained how out of date the machinery was, and how hard parts were to come by. The fact that the age-old remedy of “switch it off and on again” was what eventually resolved the problem was only slightly reassuring.

Especially as, two weeks later, during a major training exercise off the coast of Albania, the engine went again. A 30-hour race to strip out and replace one of the massive cylinder heads ensued. Fascinating as it was to watch, it wasn’t exactly the image of naval power one might wish for when we’re about to go it alone again in the post-Brexit era.

Still, as a fact-packed film about an enclosed community of almost a thousand men and women, Warship had its moments. Especially when recording the impressions of the 130 enthusiastic newbies among the crew, setting out on their first seafaring adventure. I’m pretty sure Warship won’t catch the public imagination like Sailor did – it simply doesn’t have the grandeur of subject or ambition – but as a no frills account of life on the ocean wave today, it makes a mark.

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PICTURES: Prince Charles begins Cumbria tour

PICTURES: Prince Charles begins Cumbria tour | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
PRINCE Charles began a two-day tour of Cumbria today with a visit to BAE Systems in Barrow.

The Prince of Wales arrived by helicopter in the grounds of Sedbergh School before making his way to Barrow-in-Furness.

His Royal Highness, who is also Admiral of the Fleet – the highest rank of the British Royal Navy, met with members of the company's highly-skilled workforce as he was shown its unique submarine design and build capabilities.

His Royal Highness was given a tour of the Barrow site, including the New Assembly Shop and Devonshire Dock Hall, where the Astute class and Dreadnought class submarines are being built for the UK Royal Navy.

His Royal Highness also witnessed the ongoing redevelopment of the shipyard's facilities and infrastructure, which will support the build of the new Dreadnought submarines. Throughout his tour, he stopped to talk to a number of employees, including some of the company's 1,000 apprentices.

BAE Systems Submarines Managing Director, Tony Johns, said: "It was a great honour to welcome His Royal Highness to our site today. The Prince of Wales met a number of our employees and showed a great deal of interest in their work and the unique skills we have here in Barrow. Having such a prestigious guest demonstrates to our workforce how vital a role they play in building the Royal Navy's submarines and ultimately protecting our nation."

The Prince will preview the regeneration of Rosehill Theatre ahead of its public re-opening at Rosehill Theatre, Moresby, Whitehaven, today before attending a reception to celebrate the anniversary of the Ennerdale Community Hub, which has saved the local pub from closure, as well as creating a new gym, cafe and village shop.

Tomorrow he will visit Appleby to see how the town has recovered from the floods of 2015 and also pick up some cheese when he takes a look around Appleby Creamery.
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Royal Navy to tighten security at another base in Portsmouth

Royal Navy to tighten security at another base in Portsmouth | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
SECURITY at one of the Royal Navy’s key training bases is set to be tightened amid on-going terror fears.
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Plans have been submitted for a new security fence to be constructed around HMS Excellent on Horsea Island.

It comes just weeks after naval chiefs stepped up defences at Portsmouth Naval Base following the deadly terror attack in Westminster last month.

However, a spokeswoman for the Ministry of Defence (MoD) said the latest alterations for Horsea Island was not as a direct result of the London atrocity.

Under the proposals, Portsmouth City Council would grant a new 99-year lease on a 10,554 sq m of land around Horsea Island.

This would allow for a new fence around the perimeter of HMS Excellent to be constructed.

As part of the plans the new barrier would be fractionally taller than the current fence.

It would also expand the base’s overall footprint slightly, absorbing an additional 1,749 sq m of new land.

Other parts of the proposals include the introduction of a new 10m ‘buffer zone’, which will see wooden posts drilled into the ground.

This will separate the base from the wider Horsea Country Island Park, limiting access by cars and motorbikes.

But pedestrians will still be able to walk around the site with an 8,805 sq m chunk of public land still being available, the planning document added.

A MoD spokeswoman said: ’A security fence is necessary in order to maintain an appropriate security zone around the HMS Excellent site at Horsea Island.’
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Royal Navy Adding New Support Ships: The Arrival of RFA Tidespring | SLDInfo

Royal Navy Adding New Support Ships: The Arrival of RFA Tidespring | SLDInfo | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

2017-04-06 According to a story published on the UK Ministry of Defence website, the first of a new class of Royal Navy support ships has arrived in Cornwall for customization and final preparation to go to the fleet.

The first of the newest support ships for the Royal Navy, RFA Tidespring, has arrived in Cornwall for customisation, helping to sustain 300 UK jobs.

The 39,000-tonne tanker, which can carry up to 19,000 cubic metres of fuel and 1,300 cubic metres of fresh water, will join the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, a civilian-manned fleet which provides support for warships, helping the Royal Navy to maintain its operations 24/7, 365 days a year, around the world.

Tidespring is the first of a fleet of four Tide Class tankers which will all be taken through customisation in Falmouth. She will now undergo an intense programme of work at the A&P shipyard, and is expected to enter service before the end of the year. The new Tide Class tankers will provide key support to the Queen Elizabeth Class carriers when they come into service, alongside the wider fleet.

The arrival is a significant milestone in the ‘Year of the Navy’ which will also see the debut in Portsmouth of the first of the Queen Elizabeth-Class aircraft carriers, the start of construction for the fleet of new Type 26 Frigates and the opening of the first permanent Royal Navy base east of Suez in more than half a century.

Minister for Defence Procurement Harriett Baldwin said:

“RFA Tidespring’s UK arrival is a key milestone in 2017, the Year of the Royal Navy, which will also see the MOD develop world-class ships and submarines in support of Britain’s role as a leading naval power.

“Backed by a rising Defence budget, the delivery of the Tide Class tankers is a crucial element of the Government’s £178 billion plan to ensure our armed forces have the equipment they need.”

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Support ship arrives in West Country for customisation

Support ship arrives in West Country for customisation | Royal Navy | Scoop.it
The first of the newest support ships for the Royal Navy, RFA Tidespring, has arrived in the Westcountry for customisation, helping to sustain 300 jobs.

The 39,000-tonne tanker, which can carry up to 19,000 cubic metres of fuel and 1,300 cubic metres of fresh water, will join the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, a civilian-manned fleet which provides support for warships, helping the Royal Navy to maintain its operations 24/7, 365 days a year, around the world.

Tidespring is the first of a fleet of four Tide Class tankers which will all be taken through customisation in Falmouth. She will now undergo an intense programme of work at the A&P shipyard, and is expected to enter service before the end of the year. The new Tide Class tankers will provide key support to the Queen Elizabeth Class carriers when they come into service, alongside the wider fleet.

The arrival is a significant milestone in the 'Year of the Navy' which will also see the debut in Portsmouth of the first of the Queen Elizabeth-Class aircraft carriers, the start of construction for the fleet of new Type 26 Frigates and the opening of the first permanent Royal Navy base east of Suez in more than half a century.

Minister for Defence Procurement Harriett Baldwin said: "RFA Tidespring's UK arrival is a key milestone in 2017, the Year of the Royal Navy, which will also see the MOD develop world-class ships and submarines in support of Britain's role as a leading naval power.
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Note from serviceman JJ Nicholson read to mourners at his funeral

Note from serviceman JJ Nicholson read to mourners at his funeral | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

Selfless serviceman JJ Nicholson assured mourners “I will look out for each and every one of you” in a moving message penned before his tragic death.

The words were read out to the funeral service today at Kirkleatham Crematorium - packed inside and out with the family and friends of the much-loved Redcar man.

The service heard how JJ, named Jonjosiah after his great-grandad, grew up in Redcar and excelled in athletics, particularly running. As a child he “never gave anyone any trouble”.

It was college where he met his soulmate Sam and they were married at Grinkle Park Hotel in North Yorkshire in March 2016.

JJ joined the Royal Navy in 2011 and was a tactical submariner based at HMS Neptune, in Faslane near Glasgow. But his world was rocked two years later when he was diagnosed with a rare form of bone and soft tissue cancer.


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‘Superb ambassadors’ of 45 Commando celebrate 45 year bond with Arbroath

‘Superb ambassadors’ of 45 Commando celebrate 45 year bond with Arbroath | Royal Navy | Scoop.it

Royal Marines brought the heart of Arbroath to a standstill today as they celebrated a proud four-and-a-half-decade association with the Scottish fishing port.

Residents of the Angus town applauded the marines of 45 Commando, the RM Band and the commando gunners of 29 Regiment RA as they marched through the town centre.

The sight of the Band of HM Royal Marines Scotland leading the 350 green berets of 45 Commando and their associated Army units through the granite-flanked streets of Arbroath isn’t half bad too…

It is 45 years since 45 Commando moved into the former naval air base at Condor on the edge of the coastal town (pop. 23,902) – and that warranted a civic celebration.

As it’s a relatively small town, the march to and from the High Street from Victoria Park only took about ten minutes each way.

In between, there was a salute for the Provost Angus Provost Alex King who inspected the band and marchers and thanked them for their contributions to peace and stability on the world stage – and for playing a key role in community life in this part of Scotland, which granted the marines their highest civic honour, Freedom of the Royal Burgh of Arbroath and the county of Angus, in 2003.

Provost King told the massed ranks – including army gunners of 7 (Sphinx) Battery Royal Artillery, part of 29th Commando Regiment Royal Artillery – that their ‘adopted town’ was proud of them.

“We are proud of the valour and the resilience of 45 Commando,” he said.

“You serve at a time of continuing conflict and unrest, exercising your duty with courage and compassion wherever you are deployed across the globe.

“You are a valued part of our Angus family and are superb ambassadors for the county.”

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