HMS Ramsey Crest

HMS Ramsey

HMS Ramsey is one of the four Royal Navy minehunters currently working in the Gulf, her role is to safeguard the waterways for all shipping in the area.

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Royal Navy mine hunter, HMS Ramsey, returned to her home port of HM Naval Base Clyde on Friday August 29th 2014 after spending three years in the Gulf.

Maintaining and developing the RN’s warm-water mine-hunting capability proves a challenge for both the ships and the crew, but one that many of the crew have faced before. Their extensive experience in the region, coupled with the training received by the crew in the UK, mean that despite a crew change, Ramsey remains ready for any task that may come her way.

Among the highlights of the latter part of 2012 was a visit to the ship in Bahrain by the Secretary of State for Defence, Mr Philip Hammond, and a boarding exercise with US Navy and Coast Guard ships in the region.

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Current operation Kipion MCMV

In support of wider British efforts in the region, minehunters are providing the capability to conduct route survey, sea-bed clearance, and mine clearance operations all over the Gulf. The operation also aims to provide a visible naval presence in a region where stability and good relations with local nations is vital. Much of the UK’s oil and gas, as well as other products, come from the Gulf region and as such these efforts are of vital importance to our economy and lifestyle.

Protecting our economy

Maritime trade is the lifeblood of the UK economy and industry. 95% of Britain’s economic activity depends on the oceans. And every year Britain imports goods worth £524 billion. The UK is so dependent on the seas for its prosperity, that without the Royal Navy acting as deterrent the effect on the economy would be overwhelming.

Providing security at sea

The UK has a responsibility to its citizens and its allies to endeavour to safeguard the high seas. This is why the Royal Navy protects home and international waters – making sure the global trade that Britain and the world depend on can proceed without a hitch.

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Unit History

The First Ramsey1912

She was requisitioned by the Admiralty on the 28th October 1914, and commissioned on the 20th November 1914, for use as an armed steamer.

Intercept and Attack1915

she was employed on night patrols. On the 8th August 1915 she intercepted a steamship flying the Russian flag, which was actually the German Auxillary Minesweeper Meteor.

Intercept and attack1915

After being crippled by point-blank gunfire, Ramsey was struck amidships by a German torpedo and sunk.

Intercept and attack1915

Five Officers including Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Harry Raby Royal Naval Reserve, and 50 ratings were lost, also a further four Officers and 39 ratings were taken prisoner. 

Intercept and attack1915

On the following day, the Meteor encountered superior British forces and scuttled herself, Ramsey’s crew returning home in the Undaunted.

The Second Ramsey1919

The second Ramsey was originally the USS Meade, launched 29th May 1919.

Second World War1940

During the Second World War she was transferred to the Royal Navy and commissioned at Halifax, Nova Scotia on the 26th 1940 as HMS Ramsey. In June 1941 she joined the 22nd Escort Group.


Further work was done in Belfast and Clyde, Ramsey then joined the B6 Escort Group, Western Approaches Command. After one round trip she paid off for a long refit in Grimsby which lasted until 1943.

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Commanding Officer Ashley Spencer

Ashley Spencer

Rank: Lieutenant Commander

Lt Cdr Ashley Spencer joined Britannia Royal Naval College as a Warfare Officer in 1999. He joined HMS Ramsey in January 2014.

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Engineering Technician (Marine Engineering)

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HMS Ramsey could travel from London to Birmingham 25 times on one tank of fuel

HMNB Clyde

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