Beauty and the beast

ON THE MOVE HMS St Albans, front, with the USS George H W Bush during an exercise in the Middle East
ON THE MOVE HMS St Albans, front, with the USS George H W Bush during an exercise in the Middle East

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AT first glance, these warships look a similar size and length– but in reality they are a gulf apart.

Small Royal Navy frigate HMS St Albans met up with the giant US Navy carrier USS George H W Bush for exercises in the Middle East.

The Portsmouth-based frigate, which weighs a dainty 5,000 tonnes, was dwarfed by the 100,000-tonne nuclear-powered beast behind her.

But that didn’t stop navy photographers capturing an optical illusion during training exercises in the Gulf.

USS George Bush visited Portsmouth earlier this year, bringing 5,000 sailors to the city on May bank holiday weekend.

The ship was so large she had to drop anchor off Stokes Bay because Portsmouth Harbour is too narrow.

Since leaving Portsmouth in June, St Albans has played a key role in a major exercise in the Gulf, testing the abilities of naval forces to defend the region’s scores of gas and oil platforms which are vital to the UK and global economy.

The Saint will continue on patrols in the Middle East before returning home to Portsmouth in December.