NE120052

NE120052

MIGHTY HMS ILLUSTRIOUS IN SCOTTISH WATERS AFTER REFIT AND REDEDICATION – AND READY TO BE RE-ARMED

As she powers up the West Highland waters of Loch Long, Royal Navy carrier HMS Illustrious looks every inch the awesome fighting machine she is.

She is heading for the ammunitioning jetty at Glenmallan in Argyll, where she’ll stay until next Monday, taking on the stores and ammunition she’ll need before heading much further north.

HMS Illustrious, is heading inside the Arctic Circle for eight weeks or arduous cold weather training which culminates in Exercise Cold Response, a Norwegian led NATO exercise which will also involve ships from Denmark, the Netherlands and Sweden.

Once that is completed Illustrious will be ready to take over as the UK’s high-readiness helicopter and commando carrier, ready for action anywhere in the world.

During the exercise, she will embark her Lynx and Sea King helicopters along with a company of Royal Marines from Plymouth-based 42 Commando. The Royal Marines will be joined ashore by landing forces from the Netherlands and the United States. Amphibious assault ship HMS Bulwark will also be taking part.

Captain Martin Connell, the commanding officer of HMS Illustrious, said: “Last year the government reaffirmed the need for the UK’s armed forces to be capable of responding to a wide variety of potential crises anywhere in the world.

“Operating and fighting in extreme weather is just one vital part of a global capability and it is important that we exercise it from time to time.

“This exercise inside the Arctic Circle will be a stiff test but it marks a significant milestone in preparing to take over as the UK’s sole high readiness helicopter carrier later in the year. I very much look forward to supporting our NATO allies and to demonstrating the abilities in a challenging multi-national exercise.”

After a lengthy refit, HMS Illustrious went overseas for the first time in more than two years.Picture: LA(PHOT) M. Hogan

Posted by Royal Navy Media Archive on 2012-02-17 11:01:29

Tagged: , Illustrious , Glen Mallon , News Event , Surface Ship , Aircraft Carrier , UK , Faslane , ARGYLL

amazing weather images – NE120052 #Weather #Images

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