Hello and hi. So, you don’t know much about The Royal Navy? Luckily, I am here to help. You are welcome, mate. The Royal Navy is the UK’s principal naval warfare force. Respect. Naval forces were first used by Alfred the Great in the 9th century-and from the early 14th century England’s navy was engaged in maritime warfare. Further, the modern Royal Navy traces its origins to the early 16th century and is the OLDEST of the UK’s armed services, and is commonly known as the Senior Service.
Brief History, Royal Navy (RN)
From the middle decades of the 17th century and through the 18th century, the RN vied with the Dutch Navy (of course they did) and then later with the French Navy for maritime supremacy. From the mid 18th century it was THE most powerful navy in the world until surpassed by the United States Navy duringWWII. Shout out to the US Navy. Holla.
The RN played a key part/role in establishing the British Empire as the unmatched world power during the 19th and first part of the 20th centuries. Am guessing you knew this. At least I am hoping you did.
The RN maintains a fleet of superbly technologically, sophisticated ships and submarines to include:
- amphibious assault ship
- 2 amphibious transport docs
- 4 ballistic missile submarines
- 7 nuclear fleet submarines
- 6 guided missile destroyers
- 13 frigates
- 15 mine-countermeasure vessels and
- 22 patrol vessels
In addition, as of March 2016-thre are 77 commissioned ships in the RN, plus 12 ships of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA) and there are 5 Merchant Navy ships available to the RFA under a private finance initiative. The RFA replenishes RN warships ast sea and augments the RN’s amphibious warfare capabilities through its 3 Bay-class landing ships vessels. The TOTAL displacement of the RN is approx 337K tonnes.
The RN is part of Her Majesty’s Naval Service-which includes the Royal Marines. The professional head of the Naval Service is the FIRST SEA LORD-an admiral and member of the Defence Council of the UK. Quick anecdote…when I first heard this title ‘first sea lord’ way back when I first moved here, I nearly died. ‘First Sea Lord?’ It just sounded so grandiose. It sounded a bit intimidating as well. I began to wonder what ol’ Poseidon thought of it all? But really, ‘First sea lord’? I just found it amusing. But one must not be amused. Truth be known, being First Sea Lord and Chief of Naval Staff is pretty serious business. Originally the title was: First Naval Lord but it was later changed to First Sea Lord. The current First Sea Lord is Admiral Sir Philip Jones (appointed in April 2016). Respect.
The RN currently operates 3 bases in the UK where commissioned ships are based to include: Portsmouth, Clyde, Devonport, Plymouth-with Plymouth being the largest operational naval base in Western Europe.
The Royal Navy and the migration crisis
Some say that the Royal Navy is obsessed with BIG ships. Of course they are. I don’t expect them to be concerning themselves with underwater basket-weaving. These sentiments are difficult to hear yet it is true that the Royal Navy does not have enough ships for a mission to protect Britain’s shores. Enter the migration crisis. The migration crisis which continues to worsen in each passing day, as migrants flee their war-torn countries as they enter Europe, has serious implications for the UK. However, it is important to note that the newly established EU Naval Force should be handling this problem. I guess they are trying their best. In addition, in order for effective protection of the British coast, ships/boats are needed, and the number of surface combat ships have been radically reduced by recent defence cuts. In short, the Royal Navy simply does not have enough ships available for the kind of mission that the current migration crisis has bestowed upon the UK (and Europe in general). I don’t know what the answer is but I do know that The Royal Navy is doing a fine job and that they should be commended for it. Yes, yes I do.
Norwegian Royal Navy
Why on earth am I now writing about the Norwegian Royal Navy? Well, Lasse Matberg, that’s why. Matberg is a Norwegian Navy officer and is well, pretty easy on the eyes. Jesus take the wheel. Have you seen this guy? I have blogged about him previously. The guy looks like a Viking-and trust me, that is a good thing. Further, Matberg is proof that God loves us women. And sorry (not sorry), but he kind of looks like Jesus. Matberg is a Norwegian native and hails from Stavenger. He is 6’6, has 100K followers on Instagram and loves nothing more than cuddling kittens and deep-conditioning his hair. Ok, I made that last bit up. Here is Matberg pictured below. Ladies…you have been warned. For real.
So, The Royal Navy pretty much rocks, in my opinion. Their current role is to protect British interests at home and abroad, which includes executing the foreign and defence policies of Her Majesty’s Government through the exercise of military effect, diplomatic activities-and other activities which support their objective. In addition, The Royal Navy is a KEY element of the British contribution to NATO. I have mad respect for The Royal Navy. That is all.