HMS Argyll returns home for Christmas

Sailors from the Royal Navy warship HMS Argyll returned home to Plymouth Naval Base to a cheering crowd of families and friends on Decembe 18 after a successful six-month deployment to the Caribbean and North Atlantic seizing illegal drugs and giving out disaster relief.''Images by: LA(Phot) Stephen Johncock
Sailors from the Royal Navy warship HMS Argyll returned home to Plymouth Naval Base to a cheering crowd of families and friends on Decembe 18 after a successful six-month deployment to the Caribbean and North Atlantic seizing illegal drugs and giving out disaster relief.''Images by: LA(Phot) Stephen Johncock

HMS Argyll, the Royal Navy frigate affiliated to Argyll and Bute, returned home to the UK on Thursday at the end of a six-month spell of service in the Caribbean and North Atlantic.

The vessel arrived at Plymouth Naval Base at the end of a 183-day deployment which included four separate successful drugs busts and a high-speed dash to give humanitarian aid to hurricane-hit Bermuda.

Her tour covered 25,000 nautical miles and featured visits to no fewer than 16 countries, including Belize, Mexico, the Cayman Islands, Montserrat, Colombia, Cuba and the Dominican Republic.

She also formed part of an international flotilla which assembled in the US port city of Baltimore in Maryland to mark the two hundredth anniversary of the American national anthem.

HMS Argyll’s Atlantic patrol duties were handed over to HMS Severn; the ship, which was launched from the Yarrow Shipbuilders yard in Glasgow in 1989 and which last visited Rothesay Bay in August 2009, will now undergo maintenance before her next deployment in 2015.

The last Royal Navy vessel with a direct affiliation to Rothesay alone was HMS Spartan, the Swiftsure class nuclear submarine which was decommissioned in 2006, though the mine countermeasures ship HMS Brocklesby, which was also affiliated to the town in the past, is still an active part of the Navy fleet.