All Six Royal Navy Destroyers Now in Port after HMS Diamond Returns
(Source: British Forces News; issued Dec 01, 2017)
A Royal Navy destroyer has returned to base after being forced to cut a mission to the Gulf short following a mechanical breakdown.

The crew of HMS Diamond was welcomed home by friends and family as they sailed back to Portsmouth Naval Base.

The Type-45 destroyer spent three months in the Mediterranean before having to end her deployment because of "technical issues".

A navy spokesman said: "She was due to head to the Gulf for a nine-month deployment but returned to her home port early after experiencing technical issues.

"During her time away, the ship's company had a demanding and diverse programme of events - taking command of NATO Standing Maritime Group 2 in the Mediterranean when HMS Ocean was retasked to deliver disaster relief in the Caribbean.”

Commander Ben Keith, Diamond's commanding officer, said: "While it is earlier than planned, it was fantastic to see all of our families waiting here for us on the jetty. Everyone on board was incredibly excited.

"We had a rapid change of programme not long after we deployed by taking on the command of Nato Standing Maritime Group 2 in the Med.

“We completed two months of tasking conducting maritime security with our Nato partners and reassuring our allies of our commitment to NATO."

This is not the first time that the fleet of six Type-45 destroyers has suffered problems.

In 2015, the Ministry of Defence confirmed that the propulsion system of the £1 billion warships was malfunctioning.

The ships are currently awaiting a refit which will involve cutting a hole in the ships' hulls to access the engines.

A Royal Navy spokesman said: "We can confirm HMS Diamond has experienced technical issues, but we do not discuss the detailed materiel state of our operational ships and are unable to comment further."

Diamond will join her five sister ships in Portsmouth, which are all currently in port after experiencing a range of issues, or are awaiting deployment.

Last year, responding to a Freedom of Information (FOI) request, the MoD confirmed the six Type-45 destroyers had spent a combined 1,515 days in UK ports for the year starting April 2015.

Four of the ships spent more than 300 days in British ports.

The warship to stay longest at its home port of Portsmouth was HMS Dragon which stayed for 330 days, although this came after a nine-month deployment.

A navy spokesman said at the time that the figures did not show that the ships were sitting idle.

He said they could be carrying out active duties while based overnight at Portsmouth and other UK bases such as Plymouth.


prev next

Official reports See all