HMS Sutherland, a Type 23 Duke Class Royal Navy Frigate, has visited Patras, Greece, following a successful and intensive series of amphibious exercises where she escorted Royal Navy Flagship HMS Albion.
HMS Albion, HMS Sutherland (both based at HM naval Base Devonport, Plymouth) and Royal Fleet Auxiliary Cardigan Bay form part of the Royal Navy’s Response Force Task Group lead element which is undertaking a long standing pre-planned multi-national exercises in the Mediterranean.
Commodore John Kingwell Royal Navy, Commander UK Task Group, said: ”The Royal Navy’s Response Force Task Group is in this area as part of pre-planned multi-national exercises in the Mediterranean. These ships, Royal Marines and aircraft give the UK the flexibility to respond to the unknown.”
HMS Sutherland’s commanding officer, Commander Roger Readwin, said: “The Hellenic Navy and the Royal Navy have a strong naval connection, which has been built up over many years. Whilst visiting the beautiful town of Patras provided an opportunity for my ship’s company to enjoy some relaxation, it also served to strengthen the relationship between our two navies further, through local engagement.”
HMS Sutherland is a multi-purpose warship capable of undertaking a wide range of operations which range from supporting humanitarian relief to war-fighting. The combination of state-of-the-art weapons, sensors and communications with well trained highly motivated sailors ensure she is maintained at high readiness capable of responding to short notice tasking.
The short working visit will allow HMS Sutherland to sustain her commitment to the task group as preparations are made for further challenging multi-national exercises which will see them continue to operate in the Mediterranean before heading to the Middle East in order contribute to existing national and multi-national operations and to strengthen regional friendships.