One of the Royal Navy’s newest and most sophisticated ships will make a weekend visit to Liverpool.
State-of-the-art Type 45 destroyer HMS Dragon will sail into the city on Friday March 7, going alongside the Cruise Liner Terminal until March 10.
During her busy four days on the Mersey, the ship will host potential Royal Navy recruits, Sea Cadets, college students, Royal Navy Reservists from HMS Eaglet and other local organisations.
Sunday’s Sea Cadet visitors will come from across the North West region, including Chorley, Rochdale, Salford, Bolton and Fleetwood.
And on Monday, a number of young aspiring catering students from Hugh Baird College will get the chance to roll up their sleeves and cook up a storm with HMS Dragon’s own chefs as they help with lunch preparation for some of the ship’s 190 crew.
Other visiting students include Wirral Metropolitan and St Helens Colleges.
“This is a very busy visit to Liverpool for us,” said Captain Iain Lower, Commanding Officer of HMS Dragon. “We are delighted to be able to host such a diverse range of groups.
“We hope that those who come on board over the weekend will leave with a better understanding about our exceptional ship, her crew, the modern Royal Navy and the role we play in protecting and promoting the interests of the UK both at home and further afield.
“I know my crew is looking forward to being able to making these visits as informative as possible, each tailored to the needs of those visiting – obviously our young visitors from the Sea Cadets will have different aspirations to our catering student guests, for example.
“Of particular interest to those on board are our colleagues from the Royal Navy Reserve at HMS Eaglet and the potential new RN recruits.
“While we are unable to open the ship to the public on this occasion, I have no doubt that Liverpool will extend its well-known hospitality to the visiting crew.”
HMS Dragon, the fourth of the Type 45 destroyers, joined the Fleet in November 2012.
Destroyers are part of the backbone of the Royal Navy, committed around the world 365 days a year hunting pirates, drug runners or submarines, defending the fleet from air attack, and providing humanitarian aid after natural disasters
Britain’s six Type 45 destroyers are the most advanced warships the nation has ever built. Their mission is to shield the fleet from air attack using the Sea Viper missile which can knock targets out of the sky up to 70 miles away if necessary.
The Type 45s can also be used as general-purpose warships; they have huge flight decks to accommodate helicopters up to the size of a Chinook. There’s enough space on board to host a Royal Marines detachment up to 30-men strong.
Press Release, March 6, 2014, 2014; Image: Royal Navy