Polish navy’s newest warship, the multitask logistical support ship ORP Kontradmiral Xawery Czernicki, docked in Portsmouth recently on a scheduled port visit.
According to the Royal Navy, this is the first time a Polish naval ship has stopped at a British port in more than three years.
The Czernicki, who is readying itself to lead a NATO mine countermeasures task group in the Mediterranean, stayed in Pompey for only a relativity short spell, but her sailors took good advantage to learn more about the Senior Service’s own mine hunting tactics.
“This is my second time in Portsmouth with the Navy, my first was 22 years ago as a Naval cadet on the sail training ship Iskar,” said Lieutenant Commander Piotr Adamczak, one of the ship’s senior officers.
“All the crew of Czernicki are keen and very proud to take part in the forthcoming NATO mission. It is not only a privilege but also a challenge to take command of the NATO Mine Hunting Group.”
Since her commissioning in 2001 ORP Czernicki has served in a number of overseas missions, including operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom in the Middle East.
The ship was built at Gdańsk in Poland and is the biggest to have been constructed for its Navy in a Polish shipyard.
The only ship of her class, she was designed as a logistical support vessel, to transport troops and supplies for NATO forces.
She can carry up to 136 troops with vehicles and conduct offensive landing operations using landing craft, helicopters and armoured personnel carriers.
The Czernicki can also transport containers, fresh water, food supplies and has the ability to operate as a repair ship and command whilst at sea.