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The Duchess of Edinburgh checks in with HMS Daring’s progress

13 April 2023
The Duchess of Edinburgh visited Portsmouth Naval Base to meet the men and women bringing the warship back to life.

For nearly two decades – from the ship’s launch on the Clyde in February 2006 through to her most recent update in Portsmouth in July 2021 – The Duchess has followed the deeds and activities of HMS Daring closely as the £1bn destroyer’s sponsor.

The air defence warship is coming to the end of a lengthy refit and regeneration programme carried out both in the ship’s native Portsmouth and at Birkenhead, where she became the second ship in her class to receive upgraded engines.

Daring returned to her home base at the beginning of the year, since then the Type 45 Refit Support Group, led by Lieutenant Commander Christopher Shaw, has continued her regeneration for frontline operations.

They hosted Her Royal Highness during the morning’s tour of the ship and dock facilities.

After arriving at 14 Dock where Daring is currently docked, The Duchess of Edinburgh met Royal Navy and BAE Systems personnel who are supporting her upkeep. For her guided tour, Her Royal Highness was provided with the full protective equipment (overalls, safety boots, helmet, glasses, gloves and a face mask) needed to enter a ship under upkeep.

Having recently become Senior Naval Officer to both HMS Daring and HMS Dragon, it was my honour to welcome Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Edinburgh to HMS Daring as Sponsor and to demonstrate the progress made in regenerating her ship back into service.

Lt Cdr Shaw

Lt Cdr Shaw said: “Having recently become Senior Naval Officer to both HMS Daring and HMS Dragon, it was my honour to welcome Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Edinburgh to HMS Daring as Sponsor and to demonstrate the progress made in regenerating her ship back into service.

“Following Her Royal Highness’ last visit in July 2021, Daring has undertaken the first phase of her upkeep and has successfully completed her engine and power upgrades through the Propulsion Improvement Programme conducted in Cammell Laird, Birkenhead.

“Since the ship’s return to Portsmouth earlier this year, the second phase to her upkeep has started in earnest with further capability upgrades taking place whilst in dock.

“The collective efforts of the wider Defence enterprise, including DE&S, BAE Systems, wider defence industry partners and my team of Royal Navy engineers at the Refit Support Group will be looking to get Daring back to operational readiness.”

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