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Scott of the Big Apple – survey ship visits New York for Fleet Week

25 May 2023
The Royal Navy’s largest survey ship sailed into the Big Apple yesterday to represent the UK at the city’s biggest maritime event.

HMS Scott is taking a break from surveying the depths of the Atlantic to spend six days at Fleet Week New York, which allows the public to meet – and thank – those who serve at sea.

Although it’s primarily aimed at Americans and their Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, the USA’s allies are frequently invited to join the celebrations, strengthen NATO bonds and broaden understanding and awareness of what ships and sailors do individually and collectively to make our seas – and world – a safer place.

Last year Antarctic patrol ship HMS Protector flew the flag for the UK. This year Scott, the Royal Navy’s fifth largest vessel, has crossed the Atlantic – fresh from a spot of maintenance in Gibraltar.

On patrol, HMS Scott is able to survey around 25,000 square miles of ocean every month to the latest standards courtesy of her suite of cutting-edge sonar.

She joined a ‘parade of sail’ of participating ships entering New York Harbour, sailing past the Statue of Liberty and up the Hudson River escorted by police launches as tugs blasted jets of water in appreciation.

Berthed at Pier 88 – just one mile from Times Square – HMS Scott is joining assault ship USS Wasp, Canadian coastal defence ship HMCS Glace Bay and Italian frigate ITS Virginio Fasan and four training vessels used by the US Naval Academy at Annapolis and US Coast Guard Cutter Warren Deyampert.

I’ve never been to New York and to be able to travel there on my first deployment in the Royal Navy and be part of Fleet Week is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I’ll never forget.

Hydrographic specialist Alastair Smith

In addition assault ship USS Oak Hill, fast transporter HSNS Newport and cutter USCGC Legare will be berthed on Staten Island.

The survey ship is open to visitors all week, providing the US public, Fleet Week guests and fellow service personnel an opportunity to learn about the ship’s vital role in mapping the world’s oceans and promoting the strong bond between the US and Royal Navy.

Her ship’s company have also been invited to a number of events including receptions, ringing the bell at the New York Stock Exchange and a New York Jets American Football game to name a few.

A number of Memorial Day parades will be supported by small contingents of her ship’s company on Monday May 29.

Representing the Royal Navy at such a prestigious week is a privilege for all on board.

“I’ve never been to New York and to be able to travel there on my first deployment in the Royal Navy and be part of Fleet Week is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I’ll never forget,” said Alastair Smith, a Hydrographic specialist who joined HMS Scott earlier this year.

His Commanding Officer Commander Tom Harrison added: “We are delighted to be supporting Fleet Week 2023. This is a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate the professionalism of the Royal Navy and the pride we have in our service. To be hosted in a great city of the world by our closest defence and security partner, is a real privilege.”

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