HMS Argyll returns from Gulf operations with a bang
The sound of her ceremonial cannon firing an 11 gun salute as she came home to Devonport after her latest deployment to the Gulf
After nearly six months away in the intense searing heat of the Middle East it was a welcome break to be greeted by the Autumn showers that might have dampened the occasion.
As they came closer to shore, sailors broke out in smiles when they saw families and friends on Plymouth Hoe and at Devil’s Point — traditional vantages points for homecomings.
Their mission is now complete with nearly six million tonnes of shipping — 68 merchant vessels carrying goods, oil and natural gas — safely monitored through key sea lanes in the Middle East since the Plymouth-based ship arrived in the region in April.
HMS Argyll is Britain’s longest-serving frigate with 29 years in the Fleet
Argyll has been working side-by-side with her sister ship HMS Montrose, long-term in Bahrain, and the UK’s allies and partners in the region to reassure merchant shipping in potentially dangerous waters.
Much of her work during 164 days East of Suez has been performed for the International Maritime Security Construct, the relatively-new partnership of nations committed to ensuring the safe passage of ships into and out of the Gulf, currently commanded by the Royal Navy’s Commodore Rob Bellfield.
“We’ve delivered everything that has been asked of us in pretty difficult circumstances and we’re still smiling, now I can’t wait to get back to my little boy.”
— Leading Engineering Technician Ben Harrington
The Royal Navy has been reassuring UK shipping in and around the Strait of Hormuz, co-operating with our international partners, and integrating with the other Royal Navy ships delivering persistent presence in the region.