UK: HMS Albans Gets New Commanding Officer

HMS Albans Gets New Commanding Officer

Commander Block took command of the ship following four years deployed to, or supporting, operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.

On assuming command of the Portsmouth based frigate, he said

“It is an immense honour to have been appointed in command of this highly sophisticated, well trained ship which has an enviable reputation.

“Working at a high tempo, HMS St Albans continues to contribute to the protection of the UK’s interests as the country’s high readiness anti-submarine unit and is prepared to deploy elsewhere in the world at short notice, should it be required.”

The former Commanding Officer, Commander Tom Sharpe OBE said of his time onboard:

“HMS St Albans has been my home for the past 22 months – we have been to the Gulf for six months, contributing to the stability of the region, countering piracy, drug smuggling and terrorism.

“More recently we have maintained our connections with our affiliates – during a visit to London and our home city of Saint Albans. We have been to Iceland and Germany and have made many friends on the way.

“I have had a truly amazing time.”

Commander Sharpe will now spend a year studying at the Joint Services Command and Staff College.

Commander Block looks forward to a range of exercises and visits in the region, being ready to react to whatever tasking is required, before the ship enters a year-long period of maintenance from Spring 2013.

Initially an anti-submarine warfare frigate, HMS St Albans has evolved into a multi-purpose ship with the capability to operate anywhere in the world. She will deploy with an equally well equipped and versatile Merlin helicopter embarked from 829 Squadron based in Royal Naval Air Station Culdrose.

Naval Today Staff, August 6, 2012; Image: Royal Navy