Armed Forces Minister Mark Lancaster visited Royal Navy Type 45 destroyer HMS Duncan and other NATO warships in the Black Sea on a visit to Georgia last week, say the MoD.

HMS Duncan is the flagship of the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 which is currently on deployment to the Black Seas alongside warships from eight other NATO nations, providing what the MoD call a ‘tangible demonstration of the UK’s commitment to Black Sea security and Georgia’s aspirations for NATO and EU integration’.

The British Commander of the NATO Maritime Group, Commodore Mike Utley, and HMS Duncan’s Captain, Commander Eleanor Stacks, welcomed the Minister aboard where he was given a tour of the ship and met with the Ship’s Company.

Armed Forces Minister Mark Lancaster said:

“Our security and defence relationship with Georgia is more vital now than ever. In the face of changing threats, it is essential that we work together with friendly nations that share our interests and values.”

HMS Duncan’s Commanding Officer Commander Eleanor Stacks said:

“Showing the Minister for the Armed Forces around the ship and him meeting personnel embarked was a fantastic opportunity to demonstrate the work we do as part of a NATO deployment and the impact we have as within the alliance’s collective defence measures.”


  1. “Georgia’s aspirations for NATO and EU integration”…and we’re leaving the latter if we ever get round to it. It’s a funny old world.

    • Not really. Whether you agree or disagree with leaving the EU it is quite obvious that aspiring to be part of the EU is far greater in poorer countries than it is in richer countries. The fact that we are leaving does not change the fact that poor countries still want to be part of a larger group that might benefit them financially as the gains are far bigger in relation to their current economy than those the UK experiences. Remember only a handful of countries in the EU pay more money in than they get back. The majority get more money spent on them than they pay in.

      • it should be even less money to the EU once we have fully left,but knowing our joke of politicians we will still be paying…my view is the EU has only ever had contempt for the UK and treated us as nothing but a way of getting money and that is it….

        • Well, I would certainly expect them to continue paying to remain members of the European Environment Agency, the European Monitoring Centre for Drugs and Drug Addiction, the European Medicines Agency, the European Food Safety Authority, the European Maritime Safety Authority, the European Aviation Safety Agency, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, the European Fisheries Control Agency, the European Chemicals Agency, Europol, the European Border and Coast Guard Agency, Euratom, to name a few. It would take years and billions to replicate these well established organisations where U.K. has played a leading role. It would be bonkers not to continue our participation.

      • There is truth in what you say Lee. All we have to do is trust that the money we are going to save (? ) is spent wisely…

        • Not likely Geoffrey – remember the ‘genius’ who enshrined in to law that 0.7% of GDP be spent on foreign aid? Costing us 13Bn every single year and rising….. what a waste of tax-payer money!

          I’m all for Brexit but I hate to say that any money saved will no doubt be squandered somewhere else. One thing is for sure; our politicians – Tory, Labour or otherwise – have absolutely no intention of spending any of it on defence where it is sorely needed!

  2. When Williamson aas visiting our type 45 I wonder if any of the officer cadre asked him if he could find a few quid to provide Norwegian anti ship missiles for the royal navy or better yet whilst the ships are in dry dock getting power supply problems fixed could they not get strike length mk41 vls fitted?

    • Looks like we will be relying on P-8 to deliver AShM. UK Poseidon will be delivered fitted for and amazingly, with Harpoon.

      Asked by Wayne David
      Asked on: 16 May 2018
      Ministry of Defence
      Maritime Patrol Aircraft: Torpedoes
      To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of integrating Stingray torpedoes onto the new Boeing P-8As.

      Answered by: Guto Bebb
      Answered on: 21 May 2018

      At the time of introduction into service the P-8A will be fitted for and equipped with Harpoon Air to Surface missiles as well as Mk 54 torpedoes. These weapons are used by all P-8 Poseidon Nations and provide us with a robust route to capability employment, and ensure commonality with our major Allies. Once we have reached the full operating capability of the aircraft and have had time to study the optimal employment model for the UK, the Department will be in a position to make decisions on future weapon configurations, including alternative weapons.

  3. Daniele, the answer to your question is yes, if you’re prepared to pay your subs. A number of non-EU countries already have membership of many of these organisations cause it makes such obvious sense. The only obstacle (apart from the money) for our stupid politicians is that being EU agencies, they are ultimately governed by the ECJ. Now if we hadn’t drawn those silly red lines so early on, we wouldn’t find ourselves in the embarrassing position of having to backpedal on a number of them. The fact is that to my knowledge, the ECJ has never been asked to pass judgement on any issue relating to any of these agencies, at least not the major ones. The only one I have personal working knowledge of is the aeronautic Safety Agency and there’s never been recourse to the ECJ there.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here