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Another French Navy Double Act Bound for Dublin Bay

21st April 2016
The French Navy's Cassard is to make a call to Dublin Port this weekend along with an auxiliary tanker The French Navy's Cassard is to make a call to Dublin Port this weekend along with an auxiliary tanker

#FrenchDouble - Following earlier this month’s NATO flotilla to Dublin Port, a pair of French Naval vessels are to make an appearance albeit they will not be open to the public, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The F70 AA class frigate Cassard (D 614) along with an auxiliary replenishment tanker Var (A 608) are to arrive in Dublin Bay tomorrow. The former is due in Dublin Port in the morning while the later takes a lunchtime slot.

Unlike the NATO visitors which berthed near the East-Link bridge, the French visitors will be away from the public gaze. The frigate will be tucked away in the adjacent Alexandra Basin. As for the ‘Durance’ class tanker, this vessel will be berthed downriver at Ocean Pier.

At the same time of the NATO flotilla, Afloat reported that of the visit to Dun Laoghaire Harbour of another French Navy pair of  the Leopard class cadet trainee vessels.

 

Published in Naval Visits
Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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Naval Visits focuses on forthcoming courtesy visits by foreign navies from our nearest neighbours, to navies from European Union and perhaps even those navies from far-flung distant shores.

In covering these Naval Visits, the range of nationality arising from these vessels can also be broad in terms of the variety of ships docking in our ports.

The list of naval ship types is long and they perform many tasks. These naval ships can include coastal patrol vessels, mine-sweepers, mine-hunters, frigates, destroyers, amphibious dock-landing vessels, helicopter-carriers, submarine support ships and the rarer sighting of submarines.

When Naval Visits are made, it is those that are open to the public to come on board, provide an excellent opportunity to demonstrate up close and personal, what these look like and what they can do and a chance to discuss with the crew.

It can make even more interesting for visitors when a flotilla arrives, particularly comprising an international fleet, adding to the sense of curiosity and adding a greater mix to the type of vessels boarded.

All of this makes Naval Visits a fascinating and intriguing insight into the role of navies from abroad, as they spend time in our ports, mostly for a weekend-long call, having completed exercises at sea.

These naval exercises can involve joint co-operation between other naval fleets off Ireland, in the approaches of the Atlantic, and way offshore of the coasts of western European countries.

In certain circumstances, Naval Visits involve vessels which are making repositioning voyages over long distances between continents, having completed a tour of duty in zones of conflict.

Joint naval fleet exercises bring an increased integration of navies within Europe and beyond. These exercises improve greater co-operation at EU level but also internationally, not just on a political front, but these exercises enable shared training skills in carrying out naval skills and also knowledge.

Naval Visits are also reciprocal, in that the Irish Naval Service, has over the decades, visited major gatherings overseas, while also carrying out specific operations on many fronts.

Ireland can, therefore, be represented through these ships that also act as floating ambassadorial platforms, supporting our national interests.

These interests are not exclusively political in terms of foreign policy, through humanitarian commitments, but are also to assist existing trade and tourism links and also develop further.

Equally important is our relationship with the Irish diaspora, and to share this sense of identity with the rest of the World.

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