Armada takes to the sea

SPECTATORS in the Solent were treated to a rare sight as all of the Royal Navy's 14 patrol boats took to the sea to tackle a set of manoeuvres.

Friday, 28th April 2017, 3:06 pm
Updated Tuesday, 9th May 2017, 6:35 pm
Some of the 14 P2000 naval ships and three coastal forces heritage trust vessels that took part in exercises in the Solent this week

All of the Archer-class ships staged a series of close formations, churning the waters of the eastern Solent white as they raced along at speeds of more than 20 knots.

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The boats, which joined the navy in the late 1980s, have just completed a five-year revamp which has added 10 knots to their top speed and will help keep them in service into the mid-2030s.

The ships are based across nine locations in the UK.

With the end of their Easter deployments there was the rare chance for every vessel to converge on Portsmouth for a few days. Wartime gunboats MGB81 and HMS Medusa joined in the three-hour display.