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Naval Visits
On board the Belgium Navy's BNS Castor, British Ambassador to Belgium Alison Rose who laid a wreath at the location of where the ferry disaster took place off Zeebrugge in 1987
#BelgiumNavy - A Belgium Navy ship is visiting Dublin Port, however the call to the capital follows a solemn occasion held on board to mark a ferry disaster that took place off Zeebrugge three decades ago. On Monday the BNS…
On Saturday the public can board the slick 6,000 gross tonnage 'Aquitaine' class French Navy FREMM frigate Provence during a call to the capital.
#StealthShip - Presenting ‘stealth’ characteristics is frigate Provence of the French Navy which is to make a courtesy call to Dublin tomorrow and will be open at the weekend, writes Jehan Ashmore. On Saturday the public are invited to board…
Dutch frigate HNLMS Van Amstel (F831) was in the Aegean Sea on NATO anti people-smuggling duties and is set to visit Dublin Port this weekend
#DutchFrigate – A Dutch navy frigate HNLMS Van Amstel (F831) equipped with surface and anti-submarine warfare systems is to visit Dublin Port this weekend, writes Jehan Ashmore. The 3,353 tonnes Karel Doorman-class multi-purpose frigate of the Royal Netherlands Navy is…
HMS Duncan pictured in Portsmouth this summer
#NavalVisits - The Royal Navy’s HMS Duncan was among a fleet of NATO warships that sailed into Belfast Lough on Friday 4 November, as ITV News reports. The Type 45 Destroyer, only the second of its kind in Northern Ireland’s…
"X" tail configuration at the stern of leadship submarine HNMLS Walrus. A sister HNMLS Bruinvis is this afternoon calling to Cork city quays for the weekend
#X-Submarine - A Dutch navy non-nuclear powered submarine built during the Cold War is this afternoon arriving to Cork City for a four-day visit, writes Jehan Ashmore. HNLMS Bruinvis is a diesel electric powered submarine. The 68m submarine is equipped…
Time to clean the injectors? The powerful Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov may have created unhealthy amounts of smoke with her troublesome engines as she headed through the English Channel, but this is still one formidable fighting machine.
The recent stately progress through the English Channel of the giant Russian Aircraft Carrier Admiral Kuznetsov and the Battle Cruiser Peter the Great in a flotilla of eight warships bound for the Eastern Mediterranean has been a matter of fascination…
#USdestroyer - A high-security cordon will be put in place around a US Naval Destroyer during a three-day visit to Cobh, Cork Harbour.  In yesterday's Evening Echo it was reported that USS Porter was due to dock at the Cobh Deepwater Cruise…
Armada Fleet: Spanish Navy wreath laying ceremony on board Centinela, a fishery patrol vessel off the Sligo coast
#ArmadaEvent - The Spanish Navy held a ceremony in memory of the Armada fleet that brought the 6th annual Celtic Fringe Festival to a close at Streedagh Beach in Sligo on Sunday afternoon. Tributes were paid on land and at…
HNLMS Holland, leadship of her namesake class, is to make a crew rest call and host events for Dutch trade and business interests located in Cork and the Munster region
#HollandVisit- A Royal Netherlands Navy ship is to visit Cork City for crew rest and recreation in addition to promoting Dutch trade and business interests in the Munster region, writes Jehan Ashmore. HNLMS Holland the leadship of its namesake class…
Making a rare call by a Polish Navy vessel to Ireland (Dublin Port) is the OKP Wodnik, a trainee schoolship with 100 cadets
#PolishNavy - A Polish Navy vessel is to make a rare visit to Ireland, as the trainee schoolship is heading to Dublin Port this morning, writes Jehan Ashmore. The trainee vessel ORP Wodnik (251) arrived in Dublin Bay to pick…
Daring class destroyer HMS Dragon clearly demonstrates her 'stealth' profile. The Royal Navy ship is on an anchorage visit during the Volvo Cork Week along with RFA Fort Rosalie (at Cobh) a tanker /supplier replenishment vessel of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary.
#DaringDragon - One of the UK’s most modern Royal Navy destroyers is also on a visit to Cork Harbour, having arrived yesterday afternoon, following that of a large auxiliary replenishment tanker-supply vessel, writes Jehan Ashmore. The Type 45 ‘Daring’ Destroyer HMS…
One of the largest UK naval ships, RFA Fort Rosalie a tanker/supplies vessel of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary arrived to Cork Harbour this morning, to berth at Cobh where cruiseships normally occupy
#LargeUKvisitor - One of the largest UK naval vessels is at time of writing arriving into Cork Harbour this morning to coincide with Royal Cork Yacht Club’s Volvo Week, writes Jehan Ashmore. The visit of RFA Fort Rosalie is also…
BNS Leopold I, one of a pair of Belgium Navy frigates that are moored alongside each other during a call to Dublin Port this weekend
#FrigateSisters – A pair of former Dutch Navy frigates now part of the Belgium Navy docked within two hours of each other in Dublin Port yesterday for a weekend visit, writes Jehan Ashmore. The first frigate to arrive BNS Louise-Marie…
During a NATO flotilla visit to Dublin in April, among the callers were HMS Ramsey and a Royal Netherlands minehunter. Another unit of the Dutch navy, an auxiliary trainee ship is to call to the capital this weekend.
#RoyalNavieS – The UK’s Royal Navy Faslane-based mine hunter HMS Ramsey has returned Scottish home waters this week, after a successful term of deployment as part of Standing Mine Counter Measures Group 1 (MCM1) NATO flotilla which Afloat adds visited…
Sailors and 'Fighting Foxes' football team! of HMS Atherstone that visited Dublin at the weekend, are seen earlier this month to cheer and celebrate Leicester City Football Club’s triumph.
#LeicesterBlue – A Royal Navy ‘Hunt’ class minehunter equipped with Sea-Fox mine-disposal team departed Dublin Port yesterday, the same day in which across the Irish Sea the City of Leicester also turned into a sea of blue, writes Jehan Ashmore.…
The "X" tail configuration of the stern of Dutch submarine HNLMS Walrus having swung from a berth in Alexandra Basin to depart Dublin Port
#NATOsub - Belgian Navy vessels are visiting Dublin Port over this May bank holiday weekend. They follow calls from two other members of NATO, France and Netherlands whose non-nuclear powered submarine HNLMS Walrus features an unusual stern design as explained below,…

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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