HMS Daring prepares to sail on anti-terror mission

She is Daring by name and daring by nature. HMS Daring, due to leave Portsmouth tomorrow for anti-terror operations in the Gulf, is at the forefront of the Senior Service's next generation of area air defence destroyers.

Thursday, 1st September 2016, 3:20 pm
Updated Thursday, 1st September 2016, 4:21 pm
Picture: L(Phot) Keith Morgan

Her 10-year career has seen her do everything from tackling pirates to diplomatic visits and helping stricken families in the Philippines in the wake of the devastating Typhoon Haiyan.

Launched in 2006, Daring was commissioned in her home city of Portsmouth in 2009.

She conducted her maiden deployment to the Gulf in 2012 as the first of class and the first Type 45 destroyer to deploy fully on operations.

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Daring and her crew were principally deployed as part of the Combined Maritime Task Forces (CMF) where, with partner nations, she conducted tasks ranging from maritime security, counter piracy and contributed to the wider maritime security effort dedicated to maintaining stability in the region.

As part of this tasking, Daring was the first Type 45 to visit a number of countries and helped to strengthen relationships with countries across the Middle East.

During her first deployment, Daring travelled 34,642 nautical miles, spent 139 days at sea and visited 12 different nations.

This was followed by her second deployment which involved circumnavigation of the globe from May 2013 to February 2014, travelling 38,000 miles and stopping at 21 different ports.

During this time she crossed the Atlantic Ocean, supported anti-piracy operations in the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Aden and tracked ballistic targets during trials in the Pacific Ocean.

While on this deployment Daring was re-assigned at short notice to support the government and people of the Philippines in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan’s destruction.

At top speed, Daring steamed to the Philippines making final preparations en route and arriving just a few days later.

All Royal Navy Warships carry additional stores and equipment to aid in disaster relief and Daring was at the tip of the sword.

This was the first disaster relief provided by a Type 45 destroyer and Daring and her crew remained on task for nine days until she was relieved by HMS Illustrious.

During that time she surveyed an enormous 42,200 square miles covering more than 70 islands, treated 300 patients, delivered 21 tonnes of stores and 7,656 litres of fresh drinking water ashore, all to people who were in desperate need.

At 151 metres long, weighing 8,000 tonnes and packed with the latest in air warfare technology, Daring is a world leader and world beater.

Her highly-trained complement of 190 sailors is trained to act across the full spectrum of military activity; including such missions as disaster relief, maritime security operations to counter the threat from piracy, and when required, high intensity war-fighting against the nation’s enemies.

Today she sets off on her third deployment.

She will use her sophisticated radar and missile systems to protect US aircraft carriers as they strike at terrorists in Iraq and Syria.

Her mission will also include providing vital information to the coalition’s Combined Air Operations Centre in Al Udeid, Qatar, as well as patrolling some of the world’s busiest shipping lanes.

The nine-month deployment follows on from that of her sister ship HMS Defender, which carried out a similar role earlier this year.

There is enough space on board to host a Royal marines detachment of up to 60-men strong.

Daring is designed to create a defensive shield around a task force – and troops ashore – protecting them from air attack.

The ship was launched on a bitterly cold day at BAE Systems’ yard in Scotstoun on the Clyde in February 2006 by her sponsor, the Countess of Wessex.