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Royal Navy frigate HMS Monmouth sets sail from Plymouth for seven-month deployment

By Western Morning News  |  Posted: October 18, 2012

HMS Monmouth sails from Plymouth this week to the Persian Gulf on maritime security and counter-terrorism operations

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A Westcountry warship has set sail for the Persian Gulf at the start of a seven-month deployment.

HMS Monmouth and her crew of 210 left behind loved-ones in Plymouth as she prepares to relieve Type 45 destroyer HMS Diamond.

Known as the Black Duke, HMS Monmouth will be conducting counter piracy and anti-terrorism duties in the volatile area.

A key objective for the Commanding Officer, Commander Gordon Ruddock, is to strengthen the country's relationships with other allies as well as providing security in the shipping world's most important "highways".

"HMS Monmouth departs the UK fully prepared to carry out our important tasking and any additional tasking given to us by the British government," he explained.

"We will spend a lot of time patrolling to deter and if necessary defeat acts of piracy and terrorism. We will be doing a lot of building relationships between the UK and allies across the entire Gulf region."

Onboard the frigate is a force of Royal Marines, a chaplain, a Lynx helicopter and its crew as well as the ship's usual team of 180 sailors.

The warship has been through an extensive refit over the past few months and will undertake a number of sea trials in the next few days.

Three of the crew onboard were awarded commendations for their hard work and dedication ahead of yesterday's departure.

A father of twins, Chief Petty Officer Chris Nutbean received the Chief of Joint Operations Commendation for work he undertook on decommissioned warship, HMS Cumberland.

Leading Hand James Oakley was presented with the Black Duke Efficiency Award, while Petty Officer Darryl Franke received a commendation for dedication to his job.

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