Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

Canadian Frigate Also on Royal Visit to Dublin Follows European NATO Patrols

11th July 2018
2701 Views
Royal Canadian Navy's HMCS St. John's (340) with 225 crew is currently on a visit to Dublin, the Halifax class guided-missile frigate patrols European waters for NATO to defend and act as a deterrent to Russia. Above: A frigate fleetmate, HMCS Montreal  (336) also pictured in the Irish capital last year, is one of 12 'Halifax' class commissioned that form the backbone of the nation's navy. Royal Canadian Navy's HMCS St. John's (340) with 225 crew is currently on a visit to Dublin, the Halifax class guided-missile frigate patrols European waters for NATO to defend and act as a deterrent to Russia. Above: A frigate fleetmate, HMCS Montreal (336) also pictured in the Irish capital last year, is one of 12 'Halifax' class commissioned that form the backbone of the nation's navy. Photo: JEHAN ASHMORE

#NavalVisits - A Royal Canadian Navy frigate assigned specifically to patrol European waters to meet and support NATO interests in the context of tensions with Russia, is currently on a visit to Dublin Port, writes Jehan Ashmore.

The arrival of HMCS St. John's yesterday coincided with the start of a two-day UK royal visit by the Duke and Duchess of Wessex to Dublin. Also today, a US-NATO summit held in Brussels, Belgium took place while in the Irish capital the 136m frigate is to remain in port until Friday. 

Canada's commitment in Europe to NATO through HMCS St. John's is reflected in the deployment of the Halifax-class guided-missile frigate, regarded as the backbone of the nation's navy. The class have two homeports located on both sides of the Canada coast, Esquimalt in British Columbia leading to the Pacific Ocean and Halifax, Nova Scotia in the North Atlantic where as previously reported on Afloat, the UK-led NATO exercise 'Joint Warrior' was held off Scotland in April which saw the frigate's parcipitation.

According to Jane’s Defence Weekly, like many NATO member states, the Canadian Navy have carried out patrols from northern Europe to the Black Sea since the return of tensions with Russia in 2014. The role of Canada is to reaffirm its commitment to maintaining defence, deterrence, and assurance in the region.

Rear Admiral Craig Baines, the RCN’s commander of Maritime Forces Atlantic and Joint Task Force Atlantic commenting to Jane's said “Certainly, since really [mid-]2014, we’ve had a near-continuous presence with NATO here in the Standing NATO Maritime Groups [SNMGs]”.

Since 2014, the Halifax frigates of which HMCS St. John's (11th of the class commissioned in 1996), have provided continuous presence through deployments with either SNMG1 or SNMG2. In addition the RCN have deployed the Victoria-class diesel-electric submarine (SSK) HMCS Windsor in NATO led duties. 

Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

Email The Author

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. 

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.

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

DBSC
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club

Featured Brokers

mgm sidebutton

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events (2019)

corkweek sidebutton
tokyo sidebutton
roundireland sidebutton
wave regatta
sovscup sidebuttonvdlr sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
viking sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
sellingboat sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating