HMS Lancaster conducted a freedom of navigation patrol in waters north of Russia.

The Royal Navy say that the Type 23 Frigate “demonstrated the UK’s commitment to the High North” after she sailed above the Scandinavian countries into the North Cape.

“The operation, entirely conducted in international waters and in a responsible manner, demonstrated the freedom of navigation on the high seas provided by the rules-based international system. This was also the case in September, when Type 23 frigate HMS Sutherland, supported by RFA Tidespring, commanded a task group comprising Norwegian Frigate HNoMS Thor Heyerdahl and the United States Navy’s destroyer USS Ross.

Norway is a fellow member of the Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF); the UK-led high-readiness force of northern European nations that is capable of countering hybrid and conventional threats, as well as the Northern Group; a UK initiative formed of 12 nations aimed at providing effective defence and security cooperation in the region.”

HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen and HMS Lancaster
The Royal Navy say that the Norwegian warship HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen joined HMS Lancaster for a passing exercise that allowed both NATO navies to further boost their cooperation capability, following previous shared activity in the region earlier this year.

Minister for the Armed Forces James Heappey said:

“The High North and Arctic region is vitally important to our security of the UK, as well as some of our closest Allies in Scandinavia, the Baltic Region and northern Europe. Deployments such as this, as well as our active engagement in the Northern Group and leadership of the Joint Expeditionary Force (JEF), demonstrate to our allies and adversaries alike that the UK will be forward-leaning in supporting the security and stability of the region.”

Commander William Blackett, the Commanding Officer of HMS Lancaster, said:

“For HMS Lancaster, this short operation was a great way to close out a challenging year of trials and training. The Queen’s Frigate and her fine company have come a long way since emerging from refit – we are back where we belong on the front line and ready for the next task.”

You can read the story from the Royal Navy here.

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Captain P Wash

Blimey, Well that’s a first then.

Daniele Mandelli

What is Captn?


Morning Daniele. Probably also in support of the RAF’s patrols investigating unusual activity in the Arctic at this time of the year per George’s recent article on same 🙂

Daniele Mandelli

Morning geoff. Its ok, i think the Sleigh and Reindeer all have life jackets in case the big guy ditches.


Didn’t the T22’s do this on a regular basis back in the day? Seem to remember they always had a RFA in support!

Robert Blay

It was only a short deployment, well within the T23’s range, and supply demands.


Can’t have had much daylight this time of year – I wonder how that affected the routine if at all?


Outboard fitted T22s used to venture north on a fairly regular basis. Once the Outboard capability was overtaken then other ESM equipped vessels took over the job.