The Royal Navy frigate HMS Monmouth has sailed for the first time after an 18-month refit in Plymouth having been upgraded with the latest cutting edge technology.
The ship, known as the ‘Black Duke’ after James Scott, the Duke of Monmouth, sailed from HM Naval Base, Devonport, for sea trials.
HMS Monmouth entered refit at the beginning of 2014 and has seen a significant amount of structural work to her superstructure, which has included approximately 17 tonnes of new steel covering an area of 220 square metres and over 1.1km.
The focus will now move to testing the vessel’s engines, as well as trialling the latest updates to her weapons and computer systems; including the new Type 997 medium range radar, 4.5 inch gun and Seawolf missile system.
Following a significant changeover of personnel, over 90 percent of the ship’s company will be sailing with the Type 23 frigate for the first time with approximately 30 percent making their maiden voyage.
HMS Monmouth will spend the next few months conducting her sea trials before undertaking training and endorsement to prepare for deployment.
Image: Royal Navy