HMS Tamar, the fourth of the five new Offshore Patrol Vessels, has been formally commisioned into the Royal Navy today.

HMS Tamar recently arrived in her home port of Portsmouth again after a period of training, becoming the fourth of five new offshore patrol vessels to be delivered from Glasgow shipyards.

The ship is a Batch 2 River class Offshore Patrol Vessel and is fundamentally different in appearance and capabilities from the preceding Batch 1.

Notable differences include the longer 90.5 metres long hull, a higher top speed of 24 knots, a Merlin-capable flight deck, a greater displacement of around 2,000 tonnes and greatly expanded capacity for accommodating personnel.

The Batch 2 ships therefore arguably represent a distinctly separate class to the preceding Batch 1 in everything but name.

What will Tamar do?

According to the Royal Navy website, like her three older sisters HMS Forth, Medway and Trent, HMS Tamar will be deployed on lengthy missions around the globe, operating out of overseas ports and bases as part of the Navy’s Forward Presence programme.

“Her remit is to protect UK interests at sea, work and support our allies, assist British citizens, provide aid in the aftermath of natural disasters. She has a flight deck and is armed with an array of weaponry, meaning she can support a range of operations, from counter-piracy to anti-smuggling.”

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Lusty
Lusty
3 months ago

White Ensign officially raised just off Devonport. A nice touch to do so on the river with which she takes her name. Great to see these ships progressing well.

Andy P
Andy P
3 months ago
Reply to  Lusty

How long before the ‘gun debate’ starts again….

Lusty
Lusty
3 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

Not long I bet…

john melling
3 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

Well I can start that then… Why have they not added the DS30M Mark II cannon mount with Marlet

Cam
Cam
3 months ago
Reply to  john melling

Yeah I thought they all had the automated mk II cannons.

Lusty
Lusty
3 months ago
Reply to  Cam

They carry DS30M, specifically the A1 model I believe. This allows them to be automated, while having manual redundancy.

Speaking at DSEI 2019, Rear Admiral Paul Halton said: “We are thinking about how we might enhance the lethality of the Batch II OPVs”. Take from that what you will.

john melling
3 months ago
Reply to  Lusty

Yes its got the DS30M but not with Martlet missile added attached which would be an improvement

AndyCee
AndyCee
3 months ago
Reply to  john melling

According to Wikipedia, they have DS30Bs….. and the navy website doesn’t mention armament at all!

Darren hall
Darren hall
3 months ago

Looks smart… much cleaner ”Stealthier” line than the Batch 1

Lusty
Lusty
3 months ago
Reply to  Darren hall

I’ve always thought that they looked like a T21 that’s been left in the wash too long.

Darren hall
Darren hall
3 months ago
Reply to  Lusty

lol, if I squint I think I can see it…

Cam
Cam
3 months ago

“Army of weaponry” pull the other one. But I would like to know where she will be forward based.

Cam
Cam
3 months ago
Reply to  Cam

no edit!!! “Array” Not army….

Paul.P
Paul.P
3 months ago
Reply to  Cam

Page 13 of this publication suggests she will be deployed with HMS Spey to the Far East.

https://www.submarinersassociation.co.uk/images/SA/Pages/In-Depth_Newsletters/SemaphoreMay20.pdf

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
3 months ago
Reply to  Paul.P

A certain knowledgeable poster on this site has heard rumblings about Trent going to Gib.

Paul.P
Paul.P
3 months ago

To do what; constabulary work in the Med? Helping with interception and rescue of African refugees trying to reach Italy perhaps. That flow hasn’t been in the news for a while. Or flying the flag in North and West Africa.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
3 months ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Well yes, I guess so. With the lack of helicopter and weaponry they cannot do much else. The heli is the biggest omission.

Paul.P
Paul.P
3 months ago

In the past Russian carrier group has refuelled at Spanish port in North Africa. Having ‘escorted’ them through the Channel no doubt the RN would like to give them a gentle reminder who controls access to the Med.

Andy P
Andy P
3 months ago
Reply to  Cam

Hang a couple of gimpies off the bridge wings and BOOOM ! You have your “array of weaponry”. 😉

DaveyB
DaveyB
3 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

Sorry, but I’m a Dillon fanboy.

Sceptical Richard
Sceptical Richard
3 months ago

Never mind the artillery. I still wish they had a hangar and shipped a Wildcat with Martlet and we had enough Wildcats to go round! Now that would be a really useful capability

Jonathan
Jonathan
3 months ago

Yes a hanger would seem to be the real missing piece with these ships. That would make a lot of sense if these ships take on the Atlantic deployments.

Anyone know why they did not go for a hanger other than penny pinching ?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
3 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

I’ve read that given the inflated price paid ( TOBAR ) that a hanger could have been included. So no penny pinching.

Whether that is true I do not know.

Julian
Julian
3 months ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Sorry to sound like a broken record but for constabulary roles the surveillance reach could (in my non-expert view – I’m open to correction) be enhanced massively by adding something like a Schiebel S-100 Camcopter with a decent surveillance package all housed and maintained in a standard ISO container secured either port or starboard of the crane (or one each side to embark 2 x S-100 if more persistent surveillance was required). That could provide a fully embarked and maintained asset as opposed to lilly-padding a manned helicopter which is all that B2 can realistically do right now. One nice… Read more »

rec
rec
3 months ago

The trouble with up arming is three fold. 1) Cost, what doesn’t happen to pay for it 2) Crew numbers increase and in a service short of personnel what gives? (1 less T23) 3) How much an upgrade, the more you have the more the treasury my say why need T31??? Plus on a hanger, nice to have but with only 32 HM2 Merlin’s and 25 Naval Wildcats , we don’t have anywhere near enough helicopters. If we had more Wildcats I would rather see 2 embarked in each T45/T31 first. UAVs based in containers is the best option for… Read more »

Lusty
Lusty
3 months ago
Reply to  rec

An amendment to the numbers:

30 HM2 Merlin, 28 Wildcat HMA2.

rec
rec
3 months ago
Reply to  Lusty

Thanks: still too few

Lusty
Lusty
3 months ago
Reply to  rec

Completely agree. 12 Merlin HM1 airframes weren’t converted to HM2 standart. They’ve been left to rot and cannibalised. The ROyal Navy now possesses 25 HC4 Merlins, inheriting them from the RAF’s fleet of 28 HC3/3I models. However, 3 HC3 airframes won’t be converted to HC4 standard. This is understandable, as I believe two were severely damaged in Afghanistan. Wildcats numbers were originally 40 for the Army, 30 for the Navy, with an option for an additional 10. This was reduced to 34 and 28 respectively. Whilst the fleet is shared between the services, I’d still like to see an order… Read more »

DRS
DRS
3 months ago
Reply to  rec

S100 copters with optional missiles. Save the Royal Navy also suggested same. Also add the Same missiles on the gun too. Not too expensive, force multiplier for all of them.

mr craig g colliston
mr craig g colliston
3 months ago

Get her down to the channel to confront the French.

Paul.P
Paul.P
3 months ago

Now that the 57mm has been chosen for Type 31 this is surely the obvious way to increase the lethality of the River 2s. With the programmable ammunition it has a punch against surface targets out to the horizon and good AA capability. Keep the mini guns or replace with 30mm and add a UAV and torpedo tubes and you have credible global ….Black Swan sloop??

Frank62
Frank62
3 months ago
Reply to  Paul.P

57mm effective range is 8.5 km.

john T
john T
3 months ago

if it’s in Gibraltar it wont need a hanger as they have an Raf base there it would be a great asset in that area

HF
HF
3 months ago

Not much smaller than a ww2 destroyer

Frank62
Frank62
3 months ago
Reply to  HF

Larger than most RN WW2 DDs.A_I class 13-1400t, Tribals 17-1800t.

HF
HF
3 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

Thanks

Frank62
Frank62
3 months ago

“…armed with an array of weaponry”? You’re having a laugh! It can see off terrorists in small boats but is otherwise defenceless against anything larger, aircraft, missiles, submarines & can give zero NGS.
Typical HMG spin to decieve the public which no adversary will believe as they do proper research rather than believing publicity soundbites. Rather than undergunning T31’s with 57mm, thay’d be better on these, though I’d prefer 76mm.