Polar bears on the ice spotted by the team on HMS Protector during her historic expedition to near the North Pole (Picture: Royal Navy).
Navy

Royal Navy sailors to get polar training from Canadian Coast Guard

The Navy said its personnel will learn more about navigating icy waters and breaking ice sheets.

Polar bears on the ice spotted by the team on HMS Protector during her historic expedition to near the North Pole (Picture: Royal Navy).

Royal Navy sailors are to be trained in tackling icy Arctic waters as part of a deal with the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG).

The Navy said its personnel will learn more about navigating through polar seas and breaking ice sheets, while the CCG will have operational training opportunities and experience with crewless Royal Navy technology.

The agreement was signed between the NATO allies at CCG headquarters in Ottawa by its commissioner, Mario Pelletier and Second Sea Lord, Vice Admiral Nick Hine.

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Vice Adm Hine said: "I am delighted to sign this agreement that will see the Royal Navy and Canadian Coast Guard work even closer together in the Arctic, sharing and developing our ice experience, as we strive to become ever more interoperable and interchangeable."

It follows an initiative in early 2020 that involved officers from the UK's only ice patrol ship, HMS Protector, learning more about ice operations on a CCG vessel.

The UK has shown increased interest in the Arctic region in recent years – Royal Navy warships can often be seen, while Royal Marines take on cold weather warfare training in Norway each year.

HMS Lancaster recently completed a 3,000-mile round trip to the Norwegian Sea and into the Arctic Circle.