Oxford URNU Officer Cadet experiences sea time on board HMS Montrose

From the 20-23 Nov 17 Officer Cadet John Hawke, Oxford URNU, was able to spend time in HMS Montrose at sea with an exciting and varied programme.

The opportunity offered an insight into life in a Type 23 Frigate, the capabilities of the Ship, and the command structure within it.

Montrose had just left refit, meaning that she was undergoing a series of sea trials as part of her preparations for deployment.

This was a great opportunity to see many of the Ship’s systems put through their paces, primarily the propulsion and steering systems which included steering breakdown drills, machinery breakdown drills, and other exercises.

Hosted in the Wardroom, Officer Cadet Hawke was also able to gain an appreciation of the work/life balance for officers at sea.

All of the Ship’s Company were incredibly friendly, and were happy to show me around their respective departments.

OCdt John Hawke

The Ship also undertook some work on the 4.5” Gun, Magnetic Signature Ranging, gunnery serials, man overboard drills and fire fighting. The last day of the experience culminated with a rededication ceremony for the Ship. Rear Admiral Kilgour, His Grace the Duke of Montrose, and the venerable Ian Wheatley, Chaplain of the Fleet, were in attendance.

OCdt John Hawke, Oxford URNU said “All of the Ship’s Company were incredibly friendly, and were happy to show me around their respective departments. I had a full tour of the engine rooms, including meeting the two gas turbines, Katie and Edith, the Operations Room, the Ship’s Control Centre, the magazine stores, 4.5” Gun and Gun Bay and many other compartments”. 

Officer Cadets Tom Davis and Luke Harris have also since had the opportunity to spend time at sea with Montrose.

Lieutenant Will Jones RN, Commanding Officer of the Oxford URNU said “It’s been fantastic for the Officer Cadets to have the opportunity to gain first-hand sea going experience with the wider Royal Navy”.

Oxford is one of 15 URNUs located across the UK offering opportunities to 750 undergraduates from the country’s leading universities.

The URNU's mission is: "To develop an understanding of the Naval Service in undergraduates, so that those who go into civilian employment are positive advocates thereof and to facilitate a Naval Career for those who choose one."

The URNU is a chance to experience military life without commitment and gain new skills applicable to all walks of life