NWI - Naval Warfare

HMS Shoreham completes refurb

28th December 2016 - 11:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Extensive refurbishment and maintenance work has now completed on the Royal Navy’s HMS Shoreham minehunter vessel, Babcock announced on 22 December.

Babcock is responsible for maintenance and upkeep of all seven Sandown class minehunters, with each of the ships required to undergo a docking period every five years.

The recently completed work included improving the ship’s operational capability as well as carrying out innovative restoration work on the Glass Reinforced Plastic (GRP) hull.

Other alterations include the refurbishment and installation of a new design to the galley, the installation of a new fire detection system and improving the high pressure air system to meet capability requirements. The upper decks were also repainted due to the vessel having been exposed to a hostile environment in the heat and humidity of the Gulf during deployment.

Having now passed its Ready For Sea Inspection, HMS Shoreham will return to the fleet in January. The next vessel to undergo the programme will be HMS Grimsby, which is set to arrive in Rosyth next June, followed by HMS Penzance in May 2018.

Dave Gibb, project manager, Babcock, said: ‘With a fibreglass ship, like the fleet of Sandown class minehunters, maintaining sections of the hull take time and precision. 

‘The hull is approximately 25mm thick and consists of many layers of glass cloth impregnated with resin. Our tradesmen would work in small steps, first cutting out, then layering each section with the fiberglass cloth.  It’s not a skill you see very often as most ships are made of steel.’

Sandown COM Senior Platform Manager Phil Garrett added: ‘The Royal Navy’s fleet of Sandown class minehunters are extremely hard working vessels and our challenge is to maintain them and keep them operating at the highest level to meet all operational commitments. We are delighted to have successfully completed the work on HMS Shoreham and look forward to seeing the ship return to sea early next year.’

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