HMS Iron Duke

HMS Iron Duke

HMS Iron Duke is back in home waters having completed a successful six-month deployment in northern Europe. She clocked up more than 22,500 nautical miles in her 180 days away, working alongside NATO allies in a series of exercises.

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The ship saw a deployment of two halves with the first spent in the extreme cold and rough seas off Norway and the second in the calm seas of the Baltic.

Through war-fighting exercises, transits and patrols through these regions, the ship visited 19 ports in 10 different countries. Along the way the 185 ship’s company took part in a number of major NATO exercises including Cold Response, Joint Warrior and Baltops 16.

Baltops is one of the largest and most comprehensive exercises run by NATO with 4,000 personnel from 16 nations taking part with more than 40 ships, submarines and over 60 aircraft. The annual exercise is intended to hone the ability of allied and partner nations to work alongside each other. 
HMS Iron Duke took on lead role in a task group of enemy forces providing participants a realistic and complex threat to counter as part of the exercise.

The ship also demonstrated the UK’s commitment to NATO and its Baltic allies through a significant amount of defence engagement in the region.

Duke of Wellington visits HMS Iron Duke


HMS Iron Duke Latest News

HMS Iron Duke returns home from six-month NATO deployment

HMS Iron Duke returns home from six month NATO deployment

HMS Iron Duke

HMS Iron Duke returns home from six-month deployment

See all news for HMS Iron Duke

Current operation Alongside

Currently alongside in her home port of Portsmouth Naval Base

  • Exercise Baltops

    Exercise Baltops is the largest multinational maritime exercise in the Baltic Sea, demonstrating the UK's continuing commitment to the collective security of NATO allies.

  • Alongside

    Alongside in her home port of Portsmouth Naval Base

Location Portsmouth

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Unit History

The First Iron Duke1870

The battleship was officially known as Duke but during her construction at Pembroke shipyard, she acquired the nickname Iron Duke – and the name stuck.

The First Iron Duke1870

The Iron Duke story begins in 1870 with an Audacious-class battleship – not entirely dissimilar to HMS Warrior, which is today a well preserved visitor attraction in Portsmouth Harbour.

Suez Canal1871

HMS Iron Duke became the first battleship to pass through the new Suez Canal on her way to take up her role as the flagship of the China Fleet, where she spent much of her active career.

The Second Iron Duke1912

The second and most famous Iron Duke was the legendary World War 1 battleship which served as the flagship of the Grand Fleet – the largest and most powerful naval force of the day.

The Second Iron Duke1916

It was from the bridge of Iron Duke that Admiral Jellicoe directed the Battle of Jutland on 31 May 1916. The ship suffered no damage  but inflicted heavy punishment on the German battleship König.

Training Vessel1920

Iron Duke remained on active service through the 1920s until she became a training vessel in the 1930s. She spent World War 2 in Scapa Flow as a base/port defence ship before being scrapped.

Type 23 Frigate F2341991

The third and latest HMS Iron Duke was launched on 2 March 1991. She was the fifth Type 23 Frigate to be launched.

HMS Iron Duke Commissioning1993

The Type 23 Frigate was commissioned into the fleet in May 1993.

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Commanding Officer Ben Aldous

Rank: Commander

Commander Ben Aldous joined the Royal Navy in 1998, he assumed command of HMS Iron Duke in February 2015.

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Engineering Technician (Weapon Engineering)

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Ship's Motto

virtutis fortuna comes - Fortune is the companion of valour

815 Naval Air Squadron

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HMNB Portsmouth

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Displacement: 4,900 tonnes; length: 133m; beam: 16.1m; complement: 185