HMS Northumberland (F238)

HMS Northumberland was launched in April 1992 and entered service in late 1994. She is based in Devonport when not deployed.

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HMS Northumberland was among the first ships of her class to receive the most advanced sonar designed to hunt down submarines and played a vital role in testing the new equipment with HMS Torbay as her quarry at a special test range in the Bahamas.

As befits her name, the ship was built in the North-East by the Swan Hunter yard and is affiliated to the County of Northumberland and reaffirmed her close ties to the area with a visit to the Port of Tyne in September 2013. 

In May 2014 she sailed to the Middle East to relieve sister ship HMS Somerset. Whilst there she was involved in a wide range of maritime security operations, including counter-piracy, counter -drugs, escort duties, boarding operations and international exercises, all designed to deter, disrupt illegal use of the sea to protect maritime security and secure freedom of navigation and trade for all nations.

In December 2014, HMS Northumberland returned to her home port of Devonport.

HMS Northumberland rededicated on the Tyne


HMS Northumberland (F238) Latest News

Defence Secretary announces Type 23 base port moves

Defence Secretary announces Type 23 base port moves


Royal Navy warship engineers commended

See all news for HMS Northumberland (F238)

Current operation Alongside in Devonport

Currently alongside in her home port of Devonport Naval Base.

  • Maritime Security

    British ships and units are committed to operations in the Mediterranean. Operations focus on maritime security, reassurance and wider regional engagement to build regional maritime capability as well as providing humanitarian assistance as required.

  • Alongside in Devonport

    Alongside in her home port of Devonport Naval Base.

Location Plymouth

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Unit History

The Beginning1679

The lineage begins in 1679 with a 70-gun third rate which saw action at Barfleur 1692 and Vigo 1702. One of 13 warships from the Mediterranean Fleet to succumb to the Great Storm of 1703.

The Second Northumberland1705

The second ship to bear the name Northumberland was a carbon copy of her predecessor and served for four decades.

Captured And Renamed1744

The second HMS Northumberland was captured by the French after a battle in 1744. She was subsequently taken into the French navy and renamed Atlas.

The Third Northumberland1750

The third ship was launched on 1 December 1750. She paid the French back by seizing Louisberg 1758 and Quebec 1759. She was reclassified as a storeship and renamed Leviathan in 1777.

The Fourth Northumberland1794

The fourth Northumberland was a 74 gun frigate captured from the French in the famous Glorious First of June battle in 1794, but was quickly broken up the following year.

The Fifth Northumberland1798

The next HMS Northumberland was another thorn in France’s side, helping to maul French warships in the West Indies in the wake of Trafalgar.

Battle Honours1801

Egypt 1801

Battle Honours1806

San Domingo 1806


One of HMS Northumberlands final front-line duties was to carry Napoleon to St Helena in 1815 after defeat at Waterloo. She was broken up in 1850

19th Century and Beyond1866

The ‘armoured frigate’ Northumberland served during the height of Pax Britannica in the late 19th Century. She ended her days as a stoker’s training ship before being turned into a coal hulk.

Back to the Drawing Board1929

No.7,would have been an Inter-War cruiser – a sister to ships such as Norfolk and Devonshire. The global economic crisis caused the government to cancel the order for her in 1930.

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Commanding Officer Alexandra Pollard

Rank: Commander

Commander Alexandra Pollard joined the Royal Navy in 1997, she assumed command of HMS Northumberland in Sept 2017.

Previous units

Engineering Technician (Marine Engineering)

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Battle honours range from Barfleur in 1692 to Groix Island in 1812

HMNB Devonport

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Displacement: 4,900 tonnes; length: 133m; beam: 16.1m; complement: 185