HMS Richmond to Visit London, UK
The Royal Navy Type 23 frigate HMS Richmond will sail up the River Thames and go alongside at West India Dock today for the start of a five-day visit to the capital.
HMS Richmond is affiliated to Richmond-upon-Thames – and also to Richmond in North Yorkshire – and the ship’s commanding officer, Commander Robert Pedre, is delighted to be able to host leading dignitaries from both areas on the sail round from Portsmouth.
Civic affiliations are an important part of the Royal Navy’s commitment to raising the awareness of the variety of roles, equipment and people that make up the senior service.
By interacting with the local community – both in terms of allowing crew members to repay the affection shown to them, and as a recruitment function – a ship’s company can forge a lasting relationship.
While in London, members of HMS Richmond’s ship’s company will interact with many affiliate organisations, while the ship will be the platform for many influence and recruitment events in addition to the CO’s formal evening reception for invited guests on Thursday night.
The highlight of her stay happens on Saturday (June 29) – Armed Forces Day – when the warship will be open to visit by the general public, offering a unique opportunity for Londoners to go aboard and learn more about the careers and opportunities available in the Royal Navy.
The ship will be open from 1pm until 3pm only and access is via Thames Quay at West India Dock. Please note access is not suitable for those with limited mobility as ship tours may require the use of gangways and ladders. There is no left-luggage facility.
HMS Richmond has had a busy year so far. Recently, the CO hosted the ship’s sponsor, Lady Hill-Norton for a visit and separately a number of former Richmond COs for a dinner on the occasion of the 20th anniversary of the ship’s launch.
Following a brief maintenance period in Portsmouth, the ship’s company put trainee submariners through their paces off the west coast of Norway whilst taking part in the gruelling multi-national Submarine Command Course.
In March HMS Richmond embarked navigation students from the Maritime Warfare School for an intensive training programme covering several thousand miles along the South Coast of England, Irish Sea, Western Isles, Orkneys and Channel Islands.
Later that same month HMS Richmond hit a key milestone on her path towards deployment by completing two successful firings of her Sea Wolf surface to air missile system off the south coast of England, proving decisively her ability to track and destroy sea-skimming targets.
Currently HMS Richmond is finishing a period of high intensity training, and will soon undertake a comprehensive maintenance period in her base port before deploying later this year.
HMS Richmond is one of 13 Type 23 Duke Class frigates which are the mainstay of the modern surface fleet. Powerful and versatile with the capability to operate anywhere in the world, they form 50% of the total frigate/destroyer force in the Royal Navy.
Originally designed for the principal task of anti-submarine warfare, they have evolved into powerful and versatile multi purpose ships with the capability to operate anywhere in the world. The effectiveness of these ships is enhanced by their stealth design, which reduces their radar signature significantly.
In addition to the war fighting roles described above, the ship is trained to conduct a wide range of other tasks. These include embargo operations using boarding teams inserted from the ship’s boats or helicopter, disaster relief work and surveillance operations.
HMS Richmond is the seventh Royal Navy ship to proudly bear the name.
Press Release, June 27, 2013; Image: Royal Navy