UK: MCM1 Wins Surface Flotilla Efficiency Trophy

MCM1 Wins Surface Flotilla Efficiency Trophy

A Faslane-based Royal Navy squadron has been recognised as one of the best units in the naval Fleet after receiving the Surface Flotilla Efficiency Trophy.

The First Mine Counter Measures Squadron (MCM1) at HM Naval Base Clyde operates seven Sandown Class mine hunters, deploying them around the globe and in UK waters to keep sea lanes safe and protect UK interests.

For their outstanding work during 2012 the Royal Navy’s Fleet Command awarded MCM1’s Maritime Warfare Battle Staff with the trophy in the area of “Mine Counter Measures”.

Also receiving an effectiveness trophy in the field of “communications” was Faslane ship HMS Blyth – making it a double honour for the close-knit Clyde mine hunting community.

On Friday, March 22, outgoing First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir Mark Stanhope, presented both MCM1 and HMS Blyth’s communications department with their awards during his farewell visit to HM Naval Base Clyde.

The prestigious award is given to the best units in the naval Fleet and means that both MCM1 and HMS Blyth now have the right to fly the Surface Flotilla Efficiency Pennant.

The unique flag shows mythical sea creature the Hippocampus and is considered a “badge of honour”, signalling to other naval units that those flying it are among the best of the best.

MCM1 Wins Surface Flotilla Efficiency Trophy1

In December last year the Royal Navy marked the sixth anniversary of continuous mine hunting operations overseas. HMS Blyth, along with sister-ship, HMS Ramsey, were the first vessels to travel to the region on December 21, 2006.

Routinely ships spend three-years on deployment with the crew changing over around every six months. At the end of the three-year period the ships swap with another vessel of the same class and then sail home.

When operating overseas the UK’s Mine Counter Measures force is supported by the Royal Fleet Auxiliary.

HMS Blyth recently returned to Scotland after a highly successful NATO deployment to the Mediterranean and Black Sea.

While deployed HMS Blyth took her place as leader of the NATO task group, working alongside the Italian, German and Turkish navies.

Naval Today Staff, April 18, 2013; Image: Royal Navy