HMS Shoreham has departed Faslane for the last time.

The Royal Navy say here that the minehunter was escorted out of Gareloch and into the Clyde by Royal Marines craft and the Faslane Patrol Boat Squadron, while Naval Base Commander Robert Anstey joined the Sandown-class vessel and tugs blasted jets of water in appreciation from fire hoses – a traditional naval send-off.

“Equipped with specialist kit, underwater vehicles and a clearance diving team, it’s been Shoreham’s mission to keep sea lanes open by ensuring there are no mines hindering the safe passage of shipping – in particular dealing with devices placed in deep waters, thanks to a sonar which detaches from the hull and can be lowered. Launched at the Vosper Thornycroft yard in Southampton in 2001, she was commissioned the following year in her namesake Sussex town – the fifth Royal Navy vessel to bear its name.

In her 20 years of active service the minehunter has alternated her time between training/operations in home and northern European waters, plus extended stints in the Middle East – typically three years at a time – as part of the Royal Navy’s Gulf-based forces. The ship has clocked up more than 120,000 nautical miles – enough to take her around the world five and a half times – and visited more than 30 ports at home and abroad while serving under the White Ensign.”

You can read more on this from the Royal Navy here.

What’s replacing Shoreham and her sisters?

The remaining Sandown-class Mine Counter Measure Vessels are based in Scotland.

According to the Royal Navy website:

“The staff and ships of Mine Counter Measures 1 (MCM1) Squadron deploy in the Northern Gulf, conduct NATO exercises with other nations and work around the British Coastline, protecting our shores and clearing the old ordnance that remains as a legacy of previous wars.”

They’ll be replaced with uncrewed platforms in future.

Royal Navy in £32m deal for autonomous mine-hunting systems

You can read more on the replacement systems here.

George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. He also works for the NHS. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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Mr Mark Franks
Mr Mark Franks
5 days ago

The Royal Navy are moving too fast bringing autonomous systems into service.
HMS Shoreham and her sisters would make ideal platforms as Home patrol vessels. Its also noted that these vessels are going to be expensive to decommission. The GRP Hull for example.

Last edited 5 days ago by Mr Mark Franks
Gunbuster
Gunbuster
5 days ago
Reply to  Mr Mark Franks

They are expensive to operate.
Voith propulsors mean she has a limited top speed. She would struggle making over 13 knts.
She needs a crew where as a SuAV needs no crew except operators and maintainers.
We will probably sell her on as we have done with lots of other vessels . I know of one operator who needs another SRMH.
Disposal if it happens is cut it up and put it in landfill or the alternative is Pyrolisis

Mark franks
Mark franks
5 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Thanks for the information Gunbuster.

Stuart Paterson
Stuart Paterson
4 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Had to Google that one..;0)

LongTime
LongTime
4 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Hey GB
Oh I like the Voith groups designs what have they got fitted voith Schneiders or 1 of their ‘azimuth style’ propulsors??

I wouldn’t be surprised if Shoreham went to Ukraine too.

Tommo
Tommo
4 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

And the Hunts Plod on

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
2 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

I wondered why the navy would decommission the newer sandown class before the older hunt class? Would it be worth switching the voith propulsion for ordinary propulsion? The mine Hunter role must be changing fast. Hope it’s the right decision.

Robert
Robert
4 days ago
Reply to  Mr Mark Franks

I understand that a £1.7bn deal signed in November 2021 for 2 minehunter, missile ships and frigate before Russia invaded. So possible this is what will happen to Shoreham?

Ross
Ross
1 day ago
Reply to  Mr Mark Franks

I do understand the underlying sentiment here, but the truth is these vessels are well past their prime and have few alternative uses, and their replacement with autonomous vessels is a prudent decision (with the obvious caveat that we don’t lose the expertise or breadth and volume of the current capability).

RobW
RobW
5 days ago

Being from Shoreham myself, it’s sad seeing her go but I understand why. I had the opportunity for a walk on her deck once during her visit to Shoreham harbour. It was a while ago but it’s what got me interested in all things navy and to learn about my grandfathers’ service in WWII. I hope she gets a new life in another navy.

Jonathan
Jonathan
4 days ago
Reply to  RobW

Yes I remember her visits to shoreham harbour. Sad to see her go.

Rhys
Rhys
4 days ago
Reply to  RobW

She is back in Shoreham and you can visit Sunday I’ve already booked!

Tommo
Tommo
4 days ago
Reply to  RobW

At least Shoreham still has an RNR Used too have the river class HMS ARUN come along the coast WE had HMS Pagham inshore minesweeper HAM class Rob the Sandown class was an expensive class I used too be flown down from Rosyth, too trail their 30mms prior too hand over from yard to Navy they have at least another 20yrs service life left

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
4 days ago

I thought we had a “growing navy” and the numbers of ships in the fleet were going to be increased. Not my words. The prime ministers. Yet the evidence is something completely different. Ships that deliver vital capacity such as min hunters that have multiple applications to the navy outside of just hunting mines being scrapped without replacement.
Its a real shame and at a time of peer opposition in the shape of Russia today and China tomorrow, this is an act of foolishness.
You don’t see China scrapping without replacement naval vessels do you?

Jonathan
Jonathan
4 days ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Mr Bell, You cannot use what the prime minister says as any actual reflection of government policy or the truth, they are simply words that sound good all strung together….allowing a load of over privileged sycophants to make hear hear noises and newspapers to publish headlines that sell papers ( he was after a media hack before he was a politician). This was after all factored in as part of the Boris factor by the British public, we knew he was a lair and cheat with the morals of a power crazed ally cat when he was voted into office,… Read more »

Last edited 4 days ago by Jonathan
Graham Moore
Graham Moore
4 days ago

Commissioned on 20 July 2002, she did not quite clock up 20 years in service. Surprising for me as an ex-army man – we usually make our key equipments last 35-50 years!
Surprised too at the ridiculously slow ‘top’ speed of 13kts.

geoff
geoff
4 days ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Gunbuster will explain the story behind the low top speed but perhaps to do with the hull profile or the fact that her role did not require a higher speed and thus could utilise a smaller engine? My only observation is that we also lose the secondary roles-Naval eyes and ears, rescue etc that goes with the retirement of any naval hull

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
4 days ago
Reply to  geoff

And port visits by a smaller number of hulls, equals less exposure to the public for the Senior Service.
It’s also why I dislike so many base closures.
Morning mate! Sunny here!

Jonathan
Jonathan
3 days ago

Very true, the RN and other services do need to ensure the public know what there tax’s are paying for. If you have a military that is removed from public life then you will end up in a spiral of reduced interest. It’s one of the areas that I’ve always found difficult, the MACA process is very rarely used as by the time an incident has occurred and been resolved the MACA process will still be plodding along, so I see loads of events where even a small amount of military support would really help and show the public its… Read more »

geoff
geoff
3 days ago

Hi Daniele. Good point. We might be heading for an Orwellian future where Robots,UAV’s and drones make War and the humans stay at home!!
Glad your getting some Sun-Enjoy my friend

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
4 days ago
Reply to  geoff

Thanks Geoff. I hear US MCMVs are also slow. How can they form part of a Carrier Task Force with such a low speed?

Tommo
Tommo
3 days ago
Reply to  geoff

Hi Geoff, Tons,Hunts,and Sandown only have a speed in knts up too 16max Although Hull profiles may come into play both Hunt and Sandown have bow thrusters the Navy saw no need for fast speed as the tasks all boats were required too do Hunting /Sweeping Route survey take an awful amount of time the only time we would go max was when we were towing a splash target for SU shoots

geoff
geoff
3 days ago
Reply to  Tommo

Thanks for info Tommo and Graham

Tommo
Tommo
3 days ago
Reply to  geoff

👍👍

Debby Lofts
Debby Lofts
3 days ago

Will miss you from Shoreham port

Jon
Jon
3 days ago

I don’t know how dumb this idea is, but I read that the hulls were extremely long lasting. Would it be possible to use them in the fisheries protection role when the B1’s retire? This would free the B2s, which would in turn allow the T31s to be real warships. 5 Sandowns in place of the 3 B1 Rivers?

ian Ball
ian Ball
3 days ago
Reply to  Jon

It’s crazy to take eny naval ship with out one to replace it and that means after sea trials. They do this a lot and it’s sheer lack of understaning and intelligents. We went to the fulklands to fight but after learned nothing. We should by now have a full 5 carrier fleet. Even us style assult ships two to each fleet. I could design the fleet we really need . Even if its just one full carrier fleet and a all new HMS Ark Royal carrier. Way way better then the Queen class and economical to build and still… Read more »

Robert Pattinson
Robert Pattinson
20 hours ago

Our local pub said goodbye yesterday Shoreham.

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