The Royal Navy’s super-capable Type 45 destroyer, HMS Dragon, will visit Fowey from Friday (November 9) for three days, the first of her class to do so and easily the largest warship to sail into the river estuary in many years.
HMS Dragon has been at sea undertaking an intensive training package this autumn – what is known as Operational Sea Training – before deploying in the New Year.
This has seen all 190 members of the ship’s company engaged in a variety of complex war fighting and damage control training, enhancing the ability of the crew to work in harmony with the leap in technology that the ship has to offer.
Fowey comes as a welcome and eagerly awaited visit by the fourth of six Daring class Type 45 Destroyers – Dragon was commissioned into service with the Royal Navy on April 27 this year.
On Friday night, the ship’s commanding officer, Commander Darren Houston, will host invited guests and local dignitaries for a reception and capability demonstration on board.
But the highlight of her short stay in Cornwall will be on Saturday (November 10) when the ship is open to visit by the general public. This offers a unique opportunity to go aboard this state-of-the-art warship and learn more about life in today’s Royal Navy.
The visiting times are between 10am and 3pm and, as Dragon will be moored offshore, access to the ship is via boat transfer from Berrill Yard (by the Lifeboat Station) on a first-come, first-served basis. Queues will be maintained by Royal Navy personnel.
HMS Dragon will also be hosting selected tours of the vast and highly complex warship for local Sea Cadets and Scouts over the course of her stay.
Commander Houston said:
“I am delighted that HMS Dragon has the opportunity to visit Fowey.
“The historical ties between the Royal Navy and Fowey make this a popular destination for ships.
“We will be open to visitors to provide an insight into the Type 45 destroyers that can often be seen exercising off the south coast.”
On Sunday, Cdr Houston, accompanied by members of the ship’s company, will lay a wreath at the Fowey War Memorial in honour of the fallen before they are invited back to the Royal Fowey Yacht Club on conclusion of the November ceremonies.
Dragon departs at around 4pm on the Sunday.
Naval Today Staff, November 6, 2012; Image: RN