HMS Montrose reaches career milestone

Chats Harris and Nick Pearce are pictured cutting the cake at HMS Montrose's birthday celebration.
Chats Harris and Nick Pearce are pictured cutting the cake at HMS Montrose's birthday celebration.

HMS MONTROSE reached a landmark in its history recently when it reached the 20th anniversary of its launch.

The Type 23 frigate was launched at Yarrow shipbuilders on the Clyde in 1992, and the ship’s company decided to celebrate the fact that Montrose is no longer a teenager.

Taking time out from a busy schedule the entire company mustered to mark the moment with the celebration assisted by a cake, produced by the ship’s Logistics Department, which was cut in style by Warrant Officer 2 ‘Chats’ Harris and Engineering Technician Nick Pearce.

A rousing rendition of ‘Happy Birthday’ then echoed round the dining hall before everyone moved in to demolish the cake.

The occasion coincided with Warrant Officer Harris’s 23rd anniversary in the Royal Navy, while Nick Pearce, who turned 20 in March, was the sailor on board closest to the age of the ship itself.

Of the current crew, 16 members were not even born when the ship was launched by Lady Rifkind, wife of the then Secretary of State for Defence, Sir Malcolm Rifkind.

The current HMS Montrose is the eighth of the Royal Navy’s 16 Type 23 frigates and is named after the Duke of Montrose. Although launched in 1992, Montrose was commissioned into service in June, 1994, and since then the successive crews have built up strong links with the ship’s namesake town.

Commanding officer Commander James Parkin said “It is great to celebrate a significant milestone in the life of the Ship. Originally designed to be in service for 18 years, she has surpassed that date and could realistically be around for many years to come.

“My ship’s company have a great pride in ‘their Montrose’ and it is good to be able to mark such a significant date in her history.”