Commanding Officer, Captain Robert Pedre, said, “It is indeed a great honour to bring HMS Ocean to Sunderland. The ship has maintained a long and close affiliation with the city of which we are justly proud; my Ship’s Company is very much looking forward to the visit and I hope as many local residents as possible are able to come to the docks and visit the Ship.

“This visit demonstrates the strength of HMS Ocean’s affiliation with the City of Sunderland, a visit to which the Ship’s Company is looking forward and an affiliation of which they are extremely proud.”

Mayor of Sunderland, Cllr Doris MacKnight said, “We are delighted to be welcoming HMS Ocean and her crew back to Sunderland, for the final time. The freedom parades are always a spectacular sight and I know people will once again be looking forward to seeing officers and crew parade through the city centre.

"By exercising the Freedom of the City, there's an opportunity for everybody to show their appreciation, show how proud Sunderland is of its links with the Royal Navy and say goodbye.”

Just prior to arrival the ship will have completed a major maintenance period and a large scale command and control joint exercise; all this following a successful six-month operation in the Mediterranean and the Gulf where HMS Ocean was deployed as part of the Joint Expeditionary Force (Maritime) 16 and as the command platform for the first British commander of the US Combined Task Force 50.

HMS Ocean will deploy later this year as the Flagship for the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2; a significant and long-standing NATO commitment contributing to the security of the Mediterranean region.

HMNB Devonport

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Engineering Technician (Marine Engineering)

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