Great Yarmouth’s adopted warship Dauntless limbers up ahead of her first operational deployment

HMS Dauntless, the Royal Navy’s newest warship which boasts a proud affiliation with Great Yarmouth, is preparing for her first operational deployment.

The type 45 destroyer which received a rapturous reception from locals when it visited in November, is on a two week exercise alongside the Russian, French and US Navy off America.

A Royal Navy spokesman said it was an important stage in powerful warship’s trials ahead of her maiden tour of duty in the coming months, developing new tactics for operating helicopters from a single spot on its on its vast flight deck.

The exercise is part of the annual FRUKUS war game.

“We have really been looking forward to developing twin Lynx tactics from a Type 45,” said Flight Commander Lt Cdr Steve Hilson, who’s previously been in charge of a pair of Lynx on the back of HMS Endurance.

“Multi-aircraft operations from a single spot ship can be challenging if the procedures are not properly understood by all those involved with flying – they need to be instinctive.

“Operating over the open ocean without any diversions threw up some unique command and control issues which needed to be fully explored before any flying operations took place.”

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With everything sorted, the two helicopters took to the air for twin operations in June, followed by the first cross-decking (landing) on the Admiral Chabanenko some 100 miles east of Norfolk, Virginia, with the Russians’ Helix helicopter heading in the opposite direction to set down on Dauntless’ flight deck.

“The opportunity to embark two Lynx is both unusual – and important,” said Capt Richard Powell, Dauntless’ Commanding Officer.

“It will allow us to further develop the capabilities of the Type 45 while refreshing some rarely-used skills.”

When FRUKUS ends, Dauntless will remain on the other side of the pond to conduct hot weather trials.