HMS Clyde Makes First Portsmouth Visit For 12 Years

The vessel has been the patrol ship in the Falklands, monitoring airspace and waters in the region.

HMS Clyde has returned to Portsmouth for the first time in 12 years as the crew's families watched on.

The Royal Navy's offshore patrol vessel, which was the first complete warship to be built in Portsmouth for 40 years, is now being decommissioned.

She was leased by the Royal Navy and will now be returned to BAE Systems.

"Homecomings are always an emotional time, doesn't matter whether you've been away for nine or six months," said Lieutenant Commander Richard Skelton, Commanding Officer of HMS Clyde.

"The fact that the ship has come back to Portsmouth for the first time in over 12 years is really special.

"The fact that we've come home to our families but at the same time we will be decommissioning the ship makes it doubly poignant."

Sailors on HMS Clyde return to Portsmouth 201219 credit bfbs.jpg
HMS Clyde has not been in Portsmouth for 12 years.

Meanwhile, one sailor told Forces News it was an "absolute privilege" to be HMS Clyde's last navigating officer.

The ship has spent the last 12 years as the Falklands patrol ship, monitoring territorial seas and airspace surrounding the islands.

As part of her work as the patrol ship in the Falkland Islands, HMS Clyde's crew also regularly visited settlements in the area.

The role in the Falkland Islands was taken over by HMS Forth last month.

HMS Forth left Portsmouth Naval base on 1 November and headed to the South Atlantic, where she took over as the Islands' Protection Vessel.

Crowd welcoming HMS Clyde in Portmouth 201219 credit bfbs.jpg
Families of members of the crew welcomed HMS Clyde back in Portsmouth.