American sailors stop over in Portsmouth

WELCOME USS Forrest Sherman arriving in Portsmouth
WELCOME USS Forrest Sherman arriving in Portsmouth
HMS Queen Elizabeth

Aircraft carrier project leaves defence budgets ‘exposed’, MPs warn

Have your say

HUNDREDS of American sailors are visiting Portsmouth this week following an exercise with the Royal Navy off the coast of Scotland.

Warships USS Forrest Sherman and USS Samuel B Roberts arrived into Portsmouth Naval Base on Monday – providing ship enthusiasts with the opportunity to add to their photo collection.

The ships will remain in Portsmouth until the end of the week before moving on.

Photographer Bryan Moffat snapped Forrest Sherman, an Arleigh Burke guided missile destroyer, coming past the Round Tower in Old Portsmouth.

He said: ‘I live very close to the Round Tower and I’m there for everything naval.

‘I particularly like the Arleigh Burke class of ships.

‘They are very purposeful-looking ships.

‘They just look right, they are quite a work of art.’

USS Forrest Sherman, which has 380 sailors onboard, was commissioned into the US Navy in 2006.

She is joined in Portsmouth by frigate USS Samuel B Roberts, which has 200 sailors serving in her.

The frigate hit the headlines in 1988 when she was struck by an Iranian mine in the Persian Gulf, injuring 10 sailors.

Both warships have been off the north of Scotland for Joint Warrior, a multinational exercise which saw warships from the United States, Canada, Belgium, Brazil, Denmark, France, the Netherlands and Germany training with the Royal Navy to practise live firing and operating with each other at sea.

Among the Royal Navy warships involved in the exercise were Portsmouth-based Type 45 destroyer HMS Daring, HMS Edinburgh, a Type 42 destroyer which recently came back from a £17.5m refit, and HMS St Albans, a Type 23 frigate also based in Portsmouth.

Edinburgh fired three of her Sea Dart missiles at a target drone off the coast of the Outer Hebrides during the 11-day exercise.

She is due to depart from Portsmouth later this year to replace her sister ship HMS York in patrolling the Falklands. St Albans, which completed a six-month deployment in the Persian Gulf last year, is due to leave for another six-month patrol east of Suez this spring.

Daring will continue operational sea trials in UK waters.