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Duncan returns after NATO tasking

Duncan returns after NATO tasking
14 December 2016
HMS Duncan returned home to Portsmouth today having spent two months sailing across Northern Europe as part of a multinational NATO Response Force (NRF).

The advanced air defence destroyer joined the high readiness group of allied warships in October and has since visited seven cities across five countries as part of Standing NATO Maritime Group 1 (SNMG1) a maritime force permanently available to NATO in peacetime and periods of conflict.

This was the first time a Type 45 destroyer had joined a NATO task group and the 180-strong ship’s company were kept busy operating alongside allied warships from Spain, Portugal and Germany.

Her first task was to watch the Russian Carrier Admiral Kuzenetsov and her task group pass through the English Channel, across the Bay of Biscay and into the Mediterranean.

Since then, under the command of the Spanish Navy Rear Admiral Jose Enrique Delgado, the crew have taken part in a number of operations and exercises, maritime security patrols and visits to countries across Northern Europe. 

This has been a busy and demanding few months for my ship’s company and I am proud of how hard they have worked to show what the Type 45 is capable of as part of the NATO Response Force

Commander Charles Guy, Commanding Officer of HMS Duncan

Duncan opened her gangway to visitors in Hamburg allowing the public to tour the high-tech warship and whilst in her affiliated City of Belfast the crew hosted community leaders, the Lord Mayor of Belfast and Lord Lieutenant.

As it was the first time a Type 45 destroyer had worked with this group it was an ideal opportunity to demonstrate the ship’s capability alongside her NATO allies.

Her Commanding Officer, Commander Charles Guy, said: “This has been a busy and demanding few months for my ship’s company and I am proud of how hard they have worked to show what the Type 45 is capable of as part of the NATO Response Force.”

It has been a busy year for the ship’s company. Duncan was at the centre of Jutland commemorations off the Orkney Isles earlier this year and in Liverpool for Armed Forces Day before entering a routine maintenance period prior to this deployment.

HMS Duncan will play an important role in escorting the UK’s new aircraft carriers, the two biggest ships ever built for the Royal Navy. The first of the carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth, is due to arrive in to Portsmouth in the spring.

The crew will soon be taking some well-earned Christmas leave, returning in the new year to start a series of preparations ready for the ship’s major deployment of 2017.

Sister ship HMS Daring remains on operations in the Gulf over the Christmas period, her 250-strong ship’s company are just some of the 3,700 personnel deployed or on duty over the Christmas with at least 18 ships and submarines away from home.

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