DOUBLE DELIGHT AS LYNX FLIGHTS RETURN HOME FROM HMS DAUNTLESS AND KENT
DOUBLE delight at Royal Naval Air Station (RNAS) Yeovilton last week as two Lynx Flights returned home from Her Majesty’s Ships Dauntless and Kent.
Both HMS Dauntless and HMS Kent made extensive use of their Lynx helicopters from 815 Naval Air Squadron at RNAS Yeovilton, 202 Lynx Flight clocked up 180 hours flying as Kent’s airborne eyes.
Dauntless left home with Lynx Flight 229 embarked at the turn of the year and spent the bulk of her four and a half months away in the Gulf, chiefly supporting US carrier operations in the ongoing struggle against the fundamentalists of Isis. Campaign frigate Kent spent 7 months away and took her place in both American and French carrier battle groups.
As Dauntless was a shield against threats in the air, so Kent was watching what lies beneath, providing anti-submarine cover so the FS Charles de Gaulle could concentrate on launching air strikes.
Commander (Cdr) Andrew Block, Commanding Officer HMS Kent said;
“We’ve sailed more than 47,000 miles, providing the crucial support to Charles De Gaulle’s strike operations against ISIL – and before her USS Carl Vinson’s – and conducted maritime security patrols, reassuring the merchant traffic that the every day lives of our families depend on.”
Kent’s busy galley has cooked up almost 20,000 sausages, 774 roasts and 31,000 eggs…seven thousand fewer eggs than consumed by Dauntless – even though her deployment was a couple of months shorter. The destroyer men and women also saw off 6,000 litres of milk – that’s about 242,000 cups of tea.
Given her length of time away – and the much broader domain of the Indian Ocean rather than the confines of the Gulf – Kent did clock up more than double the miles sailed by the two warships (47,000 to 23,000).
Both Commanding Officers were delighted with the contribution their ship’s companies made on every level – front-line operations, flying the flag, fundraising, sporting activities and generally rising to every challenge.
Kent’s Cdr Andrew Block said;
“I could not be more proud of my ship’s company, who have made a real impact in a very volatile part of the world,”
“My ship’s company have also acted as ambassadors supporting the UK’s diplomatic efforts to protect British interests far from our shores. And we did all this, without missing a beat, nothing took Kent off task! “
Dauntless Cdr Adrian Fryer, said his men and women had demonstrated,
“hard work and determination” from the first day to the last. Our successful deployment has highlighted the true versatility of the Royal Navy and the capabilities of the Type 45 destroyers including our maritime security operations on our journey out to the Gulf, then changing role to host a royal visit from Prince Charles in Kuwait and our core role of providing air defence to the nuclear aircraft carriers the USS Carl Vinson and FS Charles de Gaulle in support of multinational operations against ISIL.”
“Returning home is something we have all been looking forward to since we started the long trip back to the UK and I thank the families of all my sailors for the continued support they have given throughout our deployment.”