Somerset

HMS Somerset

HMS Somerset is a Type 23 frigate ordered in 1992 from the Yarrow yard in Scotstoun on the Clyde. She was launched in June 1994 before making her way to her home port of Devonport.

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HMS Somerset traces her history back three centuries, but it was in 2005 that she adopted her motto from the Duke of Somerset, for whom she is named: Foy pour devoir – faith for duty.

HMS Somerset was involved in a joint NCA, Border Force and Royal Navy operation in the North Sea which saw a quantity of cocaine has been seized.

Acting on intelligence supplied by the NCA, the MV Hamal was intercepted by the Royal Navy frigate HMS Somerset and Border Force cutter Valiant about 100 miles east of Aberdeen on Thursday 23 April.

The operation was conducted following close cooperation with the French customs investigation service DNRED and in coordination with the UK's National Maritime Information Centre (NMIC) plus the Maritime Analysis and Operational Centre - Narcotics (MAOC-N) based in Lisbon.

The cocaine had an estimated total weight in excess of three tonnes which, if cut and sold in the UK, could have had a likely potential street value of more than £500 million, depending on purity.

The Plymouth-based Type 23 Frigate left home at the start of November for a six-week deployment to the Mediterranean, to provide protection for the heads of governments attending two major conferences.

First port duty was Malta to link with HMS Bulwark as part of a UK contingent that Maltese forces  requested to patrol the water as leaders from the EU and beyond gathered for a conference on dealing with migrants fleeing Syria and North Africa.  HMS Bulwark acted as the command and control centre and linked with the RAF. 

After the conference HMS Somerset became the first Royal Naval ship to visit the Spanish city of Valencia in several years.

She recently returned home to Devonport.

Senior Rates row for charity

Senior Rates row for charity

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Royal Navy Warship launches Poppy Appeal

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HMS Somerset End of Term Awards

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Current operation Alongside in Devonport

Currently alongside in her home port of Devonport Naval Base.

  • Maritime security

    British ships and units are committed to operations around the world. Operations focus on maritime security, reassurance and wider regional engagement to build regional maritime capability.

Location Plymouth


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Unit History

First Battle1702

The first bearer of the name saw action in Vigo Bay against the Spanish in 1702, serving as the flagship of Admiral Rooke in one of the most devastating naval victories of the age.

Battle Honours1702

Vigo 1702

Battle Honours1704

Velez Malaga 1704

Surviving the Great Disaster1707

She was one of the survivors of the great disaster of the era when upwards of 2,000 sailors lost their lives as Sir Cloudesley Shovell’s fleet careered into rocks in the Scillies in 1707.

The Second Somerset1731

The second Somerset, an 80-gun third rate, was launched in 1731.

The Battle Of Toulon1744

The second HMS Somerset took part in the highly- contentious Battle of Toulon in 1744 which saw a British blockading force fail to defeat a Franco-Spanish fleet off the Mediterranean port.

The Third HMS Somerset1748

The most famous, ship to be named HMS Somerset was launched on 18 July 1748. Involved in the Seven Years War she played a key part in the capture both of Louisberg and Quebec.

Battle Honours1758

Louisburg 1758

Battle Honours1759

Quebec 1759

The American Wars of Independence1775

The third ship is better remembered for her role in the American Wars of Independence thanks to a famous poemby the great Henry Longfellow, Paul Revere’s Ride.

The American Wars of Independence1775

Lexington was the opening battle of the war. Paul Revere's actions – and Somerset’s lack thereof – were immortalised by the great Henry Longfellow in Paul Revere’s Ride.

Battle Of Bunker Hill1775

The third ship saw action at the victory of Bunker Hill in 1775. Among her ship’s company was the future Admiral Collingwood, Nelson’s deputy at Trafalgar.

Loss of HMS Somerset1778

The ship foundered off Cape Cod on 02 November 1778, when she ran aground whilst pursuing the French.

Wreckage1999

The wreckage of the third Somerset has occasionally been revealed over the centuries, since 1999 American enthusiasts have donned authentic uniforms bringing her marines back to life.

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Commanding Officer Tim Berry

Rank: Commander

Cdr Tim Berry joined the Royal Navy in 1997. He assumed command of HMS Somerset in July 2016.

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Engineering Technician (Weapon Engineering)

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Fact

Celebrating 20 years of 'Faith for Duty'; 1994 -2014 (24th June)

815 Naval Air Squadron

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HMNB Devonport

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Ship's Motto

Foy pour devoir – Faith for Duty

Fact

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

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