ROYAL Navy sailors have returned to their ship after spending months ashore while she received a multi-million pound upgrade.
The ship’s company of HMS Diamond have been reunited with the Type 45 destroyer which has undergone extensive maintenance and improvements since she returned from operations in July.
Work included the installation of the Harpoon missile system and upgrades to the ship’s communications and IT equipment.
Diamond also had a new gas turbine and stabilisers plus upgraded high-pressure salt water and air systems.
Commander Marcus Hember, the ship’s commanding officer, said: ‘The day my ship’s company move back on board is a big day for us.
‘It marks the point at which we can take back full ownership of our ship and begin the process of regeneration.
‘While it is a long process, we are all ultimately working towards our deployment in 2016, getting back out on operations and doing what the Royal Navy does best.’
The newly-installed equipment will now be put to the test during a series of trials at sea and alongside in Portsmouth, lasting several months.
On completion of the trials, the ship’s company will be put through operational sea training.
This tests their war fighting and damage control skills ahead of deployment on operations next year.
HMS Diamond was formally commissioned into the naval service in 2011 and has been on two deployments.
Her most recent mission, which ended last year, saw her join a multi-nation effort to remove chemical weapons from Syria.