RFA Fort Austin

RFA Fort Austin

RFA Fort Austin is a Solid Support Ship; designed to carry a wide range of stores to support other ships, supplying them with ammunition, food and explosives.

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In addition, Fort Austin and Rosalie have extensive aviation facilities, with two flight decks, one at the stern and one spot on top of the hangar.

Fort Austin was laid down at Scott Lithgow in 1975, launched in 1978 and commissioned in 1979 followed shortly after by her sister ship RFA Fort Rosalie (originally named Fort Grange). 

These ships also have the capability to replenish at sea (known as a RAS) via six replenishment stations, three on each side as well as using helicopters for 'vertical replenishment (VERTREP).

RFA Fort Austin has had a long and illustrious career and during the Falklands Conflict she took part in the landings at San Carlos Water as an ammunition ship and was awarded the Falklands 1982 Battle Honour. In 2000, the ship was part of the British deployment to help restore order in Sierra Leone and was part of the Naval Task Group in 2003 during Operation Telic in Iraq.

In the summer of 2009, RFA Fort Austin was placed in reserve for three years, but the ship has now been brought back to life and has rejoined the fleet with a major upgrade to prepare her for her future deployments.

Leading Engineering Technician all at sea running London Marathon

Leading Engineering Technician all at sea running London Marathon


RFA Fort Austin Latest News

RFA Fort Austin takes centre stage in major international maritime exercise


Fort Austin Takes Part in Cougar 14

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Current operation Operation Kipion

Units of the Royal Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary have been on patrol in the Gulf since October 1980, after the Iran/Iraq conflict of that year, and more recently operations have extended further south with the increase in piracy off the Somalia coast.

Having warships present in the region is one of the main tools the UK has to show our commitment to this part of the world.

  • Combined Task Force 150

    CTF 150 operates in an area that spans over two million square miles. This covers the Gulf of Aden, Gulf of Oman, the Arabian Sea, Red Sea, and the Northern Indian Ocean. The Force was created to counter terrorism, prevent smuggling, create a lawful maritime order and conduct Maritime Security Operations (MSO) to help develop security in the maritime environment.

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 a 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.

Location middle east

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Unit History

Battle Honours1982

Falkland Islands 1982

Sierra Leone2000

RFA Fort Austin was one of the ships deployed by the UK to Sierra Leone to restore order to the troubled country

Op Telic2003

RFA Fort Austin was again part of the Naval Task Group that played a key role during Operation Telic in Iraq


In the summer of 2009, Fort Austin was placed into reserve

Return to the fleet2012

After a major upgrade, she rejoined the Fleet in 2012

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Commanding Officer Simon Booth

Rank: Captain, RFA

Captain Simon Booth joined the Royal Fleet Auxiliary in 1981. He took command of RFA Diligence in April 2014.

Previous units

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RFA Fort Austin displaces 23,384 tonnes