HMS Somerset (F82)

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For other ships of the same name, see HMS Somerset.
Royal Navy Type 23 Frigate HMS Somerset MOD 45153155.jpg
HMS Somerset, 2011
Career (UK)
Name: HMS Somerset
Operator: Royal Navy
Ordered: January 1992
Builder: Yarrow Shipbuilders
Laid down: 12 October 1992
Launched: 25 June 1994
Sponsored by: Lady Elspeth Layard
Commissioned: 20 September 1996
Homeport: HMNB Devonport, Plymouth
Motto: Foy pour Devoir
"Faith for Duty"
Status: in active service, as of 2014
Badge: Hms Somerset badge.gif
General characteristics
Class & type: Type 23 Frigate
Displacement: 4,900 t (4,800 long tons; 5,400 short tons)[1]
Length: 133 m (436 ft 4 in)
Beam: 16.1 m (52 ft 10 in)
Draught: 7.3 m (23 ft 9 in)
Propulsion:

CODLAG:

Speed: In excess of 28 kn (52 km/h; 32 mph)
Range: 7,500 nautical miles (14,000 km) at 15 kn (28 km/h)
Complement: 185 (accommodation for up to 205)
Electronic warfare
& decoys:
Armament:

Anti-air missiles:
1 × 32-cell Sea Wolf GWS.26 VLS canisters for 32:
Sea Wolf missiles (range 1-10 km)

Anti-ship missiles:
2 × quad Harpoon launchers

Anti-submarine torpedoes:
2 × Twin 12.75 in (324 mm) Sting Ray torpedo tubes

Guns:
1 × BAE 4.5 inch Mk 8 naval gun
2 × 30mm DS30M Mk2 guns, or, 2× 30mm DS30B guns
2 × Miniguns
4 × General purpose machine guns

Aircraft carried:

1 × Lynx HMA8, armed with;

  • 4 × Sea Skua anti ship missiles, or
  • 2 × anti submarine torpedoes

or
1 × Westland Merlin HM1, armed with;

  • 4 × anti submarine torpedoes
Aviation facilities:

HMS Somerset is a Type 23 frigate of the Royal Navy. She is the eleventh ship of the class to join the fleet since 1989. She was built by Yarrow Shipbuilders Ltd on the River Clyde, in Scotland and was launched in June 1994 by Lady Elspeth Layard, wife of then 2nd Sea Lord Admiral and Commander-in-Chief Naval Home Command Admiral Sir Michael Layard. She entered service in 1996. Lady Layard is the ship's sponsor. She is named for the Dukedom of Somerset.

The fourth Somerset to serve in the Royal Navy, and has inherited four battle honours from previous ships of the name; Vigo Bay (1702), Velez Malaga (1704), Louisburg (1758) and Quebec (1759). The previous ships all served during the 18th century and ensured that the name Somerset played a significant part in that period of naval history.

Somerset's home port is HMNB Devonport. The ship has the Freedom of the City of Wells and is also affiliated with the County of Somerset, the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries, the 2nd and 4th Battalions of The Rifles (inherited from affiliation with the Royal Green Jackets), TS Weston and TS Queen Elizabeth Sea Cadet Units, Downside, Baytree and Helles Schools, Bridgwater College and the Somerset Legion House of The Royal British Legion. The 19th Duke of Somerset takes a keen interest in the ship and is a regular visitor, and the ship also hosted Harry Patch, Simon Weston (in place of Johnson Beharry) and Marcus Trescothick whilst docked at Avonmouth for a remembrance service to launch the 2008 British Legion Poppy Appeal.[2]

Operational history[edit]

In 2007, the first at-sea firing trials of the UK Royal Navy's new 30mm DS30M Mark 2 Automated Small Calibre Gun system were completed by Somerset.[3]

On 18 February 2009, Somerset sailed from Devonport as part of the Taurus 09 deployment under Commander UK Amphibious Task Group, Commodore Peter Hudson. She was joined on this deployment by landing platform dock Bulwark, as Hudson's flagship, landing platform helicopter Ocean, Type 23 frigate Argyll and four ships of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary.[4]

In June 2009, she took part in exercise Bersama Shield with Ocean and RFA Wave Ruler off the Malay Peninsula.[5]

In May 2010 she sailed for Operation Telic conducted boarding operations and oil platform protection operations in the Persian Gulf.

On 3 May 2012, she began a refit at the Devonport Royal Dockyard operated by the Babcock International Group. The refit is expected to take 9 months.[6] She took part in Exercise Joint Warrior 2013.[7]

Somerset moored alongside the World War II cruiser Belfast on the Thames in London

Affiliations[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]