Royal Navy warships join NATO exercise off Scottish coast

The Royal Navy’s missile capability and how it can work alongside NATO nations will be put to the test during Exercise Formidable Shield.

Two UK warships are taking part in the 10-day exercise, which started this week, and has been organised by the US navy’s 6th Fleet.

Canada, Denmark, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway and Spain are also participating while Belgium and Germany will have officers embarked with the task group.

The live-fire and missile defence exercise, the largest of its type, is taking place at the Hebrides Range in Scotland and will see the countries practice, demonstrate and assess their ability to conduct NATO-level missions with 13 ships, more than 10 aircraft and around 3,300 personnel involved.

The significant investment of resources, time and personnel ensures we are ready to deploy and operate anywhere

Vice Admiral Lisa Franchetti, Commander of the US 6th Fleet

The Royal Navy has sent Type 45 destroyer HMS Defender and a Type 23 frigate, which, as well as developing air defence tactics will also collect information to aid ballistic missile defence research.

Vice Admiral Lisa Franchetti, Commander of the US 6th Fleet and Commander of Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO, said: “Exercise Formidable Shield demonstrates the United States and our allied maritime partners’ high-end war fighting capability in integrated air and missile defence.

“The significant investment of resources, time and personnel ensures we are ready to deploy and operate anywhere, anytime to defend the alliance and deter aggression.”