The oldest ship in the Naval Service, RFA Fort Rosalie, is about to begin a six-month deployment supporting allied warships in the Gulf.

Fort Rosalie’s Commanding Officer Capt Jonathan Huxley RFA said:

“Her arrival in the Middle East region not only provides the capability to replenish warships whilst underway, but also continues to bolster the RN presence here as part of the UK’s commitment to the Middle East region.”

The vessel will also serve as a floating base for RN Wildcats and Sea Kings operating in the region.

According to a Royal Navy press release:

“RFA Fort Rosalie – like RFA Fort Victoria whom she replaces – plays a key role in sustaining the constant fight against terrorism/drug trafficking/piracy/smuggling east of Suez. 

Warships assigned to the two task groups patrolling the Indian Ocean – including frigate HMS Monmouth at present – are expected to cover an area the size of Western Europe looking for suspicious activity.

To maintain them on patrol, rather than popping back to ports such as Djibouti, Muscat, Dar el Salaam and so on, several international support ships such as Fort Rosalie keep them supplied with food, ammunition and spare parts.”

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Mike Saul

Pax Britannica


Fine looking ship. Saw her on the Clyde around a JW.

Daniele Mandelli

You know dad’s that is exactly what I thought when I saw this article.
Do the Forts carry CIWS? They should do.


2 according to wiki.

“2 × 20 mm Phalanx CIWS
2 × 20 mm Oerlikon/BMARC KAA guns in GAM-B01 mounts
4 × 7.62 mm L7 GPMGs”

Probably fitted last refit.

Daniele Mandelli

Cannot see from photo which must be old judging by the 847 NAS Lynx.

Blue Dabbadee

Similar load to HMS Queen Elizabeth. Basically amphibious assault ship that can refuel other ships


All grey ships east of Suex are required to carry CIWS. We have a certain number of them and rotate them around our ships. all RFA’s are fiited for Phalanx incase they are required to go to the Middle East. The lack of Phalanx is why the MARS tankers need to go across the pacific and through Panama to get home.


Blimey she is as old as I am. Probably in better working order too!


Joined this ship in the builders yard and stayed on her for the first two years of he life
She was Fort Grange then and to me still is Fort Grange


As old as it is, it actually looks great.

Fine big hanger and the odd sight of a flight deck 4+ stories above the water.


Mothership for helicopters. Interesting. I feel a River 2 squadron coming on….

Daniele Mandelli

Exactly! Would really help our overstretched fleet.


Yes. RFA motherhen plus River 2 chicks would be a good configuration for the Caribbean drug smugglers and hurricane season, Somalia pirate interception and Mediterranian refugee migrants.

Daniele Mandelli

Let’s see what happens. They cannot keep using billion pound 45’s deployed singly for some of these tasks. Is like to see our Frigates and Destroyers kept in Groups for the carriers and amphibs.


Use her as a mothership for the River 1’s. She could provide helicopter support. Freeing up the river 2’s for other duties.

Steven Jenkinson

Served on the fort Grange a few time and when she became Rosalie,very fond memories of her when I was with the RFA

Neil Pedersen

Yeah great ship, I sailed on her when she was the Fort Grange had a great time.