HMS Cumberland, the 16th ship of the Royal Navy to bear the name Cumberland, and her crew were welcomed back to Plymouth this month by over 1,000 delighted families and friends following a successful patrol including evacuating refugees from Libya and enforcing an arms embargo against the country’s ruler. The Type 22 frigate, due to be decommissioned this summer, made its final entry into its base-port of HM Naval Base Devonport a month later than planned due to events in Libya. However, it was quite an entry with a fly-past of the ship’s helicopter and a gun salute from one of the ship’s guns as it passed Plymouth Hoe.
Captain Steve Dainton, the ship’s commanding officer, praised his crew saying, “This is a day of excitement to mark the end of a successful deployment and for everyone to be reunited with their families. But it is tinged with sadness because this is the final time the ship with an illustrious past will fly the White Ensign sailing into her base-port. I must admit it is an emotional time for me as well, because this will be my last of three ship commands and it means lot to me as well.”