HMS Westminster (F237)
HMS Westminster in 2011
|Builder:||Swan Hunter, Tyne and Wear, United Kingdom|
|Laid down:||18 January 1991|
|Launched:||4 February 1992|
|Commissioned:||13 May 1994|
|Motto:||For Nation and for Glory|
|Status:||in active service, as of 2013[update]|
|Class & type:||Type 23 Frigate|
|Displacement:||4,900 tonnes, standard|
|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 with four 1510 kW (2,025 shp) Paxman Valenta 12CM diesel generators powering two GEC electric motors delivering 2980kW (4000 shp) and two Rolls-Royce Spey SM1A delivering 23,190 kW (31,100 shp) to two shafts|
|Speed:||28 knots (52 km/h; 32 mph)|
|Range:||14,485 km (9,001 mi) at 15 knots (28 km/h; 17 mph)|
1×Lynx HMA8, armed with;
Westminster was used for the interior shots in the 1997 James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies in three different roles – as HMS Chester, HMS Devonshire and HMS Bedford. For the exterior shots a model was constructed.
In 2004, Westminster was assigned one of the Royal Navy's first Merlin helicopters. Also in 2004, the ship was the first to be fitted with the new low-frequency Sonar 2087 designed to detect the most advanced submarines. The technology is controversial as its effects on marine wildlife remain unclear.
In December 2005, the ship's company of Westminster were all granted Freedom of the City of London. 200 naval officers and sailors in full ceremonial uniform paraded through the streets of London from Westminster Abbey to Horse Guards as part of the celebration service. Westminster was chosen as a very rare recognition of her contributions to Westminster schools, local charities and the community as a whole. The honour entitles the crew the freedom to "parade through the City on all ceremonial occasions in full panoply and with drums beating, colours flying and bayonets fixed".
She was deployed to Burma in May 2008 to spearhead the British relief effort after Cyclone Nargis devastated the country, but later had to withdraw after the junta refused to grant permission for aid to be landed.
In March 2011, Westminster took part in Operation Ellamy, the British role in the coalition action during the 2011 Libyan civil war by enforcing a naval blockade. She took part in Exercise Saxon Warrior in the Western Approaches with the US aircraft carrier George H.W. Bush in May 2011, culminating in a so-called 'Thursday War'.
Whilst in the Persian Gulf she made a port call in Dubai where one of her sailors (Leading Seaman Timothy Andrew MacColl, 27, from Gosport in Hampshire.) disappeared, prompting a bilateral search between the Royal Navy and local authorities.
In 2013, she was part of Exercise Joint Warrior. She will be part of the COUGAR 13 task group, and will visit Gibraltar on the way to the Middle East. This comes amidst growing tensions between Spain and Britain over the status of Gibraltar; however the British Government described the visit as 'routine'. In September 2013, she practised anti-submarine drills with the Italian Navy's Sauro-class submarine Salvatore Pelosi and the Durand de la Penne-class destroyer Francesco Mimbelli. In the Gulf of Oman, Westminster, recently an conducted anti-submarine drill against the USS Dallas. In October 2013, she exercised with the Indian Navy
- Churchers College Royal Navy CCF Section
- City of London School Royal Navy CCF Section
- City of Westminster
- Duke of Westminster
- Haringey and Enfield Sea Cadet Unit
- Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment
- National Westminster Bank (Westminster branch)
- Southgate and Barnet Sea Cadet Unit
- The Parliamentary Maritime Group
- The Queen's Own Yeomanry
- University of London Royal Naval Unit
- Westminster Abbey Choir School
- Westminster Underground Station
- Worshipful Company of Fanmakers
- "Last Merlin squadron commissioned". BBC News. 21 October 2004.
- "New sonar protection for warships". BBC News. 24 November 2004.
- HMS Westminster crew granted Freedom of the City
- "Torbay 'targets' world's most powerful carrier". Retrieved 26 May 2011.
- David Blair (23 January 2011). "Britain, US and France send warships through Strait of Hormuz". News-World (London: The Daily Telegraph). Retrieved 24 January 2012.
- "HMS Westminster affiliations". Royal navy website. Retrieved 26 May 2011.
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