The UK Royal Navy’s (RN) Type 23 or Duke-class frigate HMS Montrose has completed its four-year deployment and returned to Devonport base port, UK.

The frigate’s return to Plymouth is significant as it is its final homecoming. Montrose is set to be decommissioned in the spring of next year.

Before returning to its homebase, HMS Montrose handed over the RN’s operations in the Middle East to another Type 23 frigate, HMS Lancaster, in the Omani port of Duqm.

HMS Montrose commanding officer Claire Thompson said: “The homecoming is a huge occasion and one that we have been looking forward to, over the past six months.”

Weapons engineering officer lieutenant commander Ellis Pearson added: “We’re also really grateful we are the crew who’ve brought HMS Montrose home to the UK after four years.

“The ship is 30 years old now and her final homecoming has been very emotional for us all.”

Babcock International was responsible for the maintenance of the ship throughout its deployment on the international mission in the Gulf.

The company works in collaboration with the UK Ministry of Defence and other industry partners, under the Surface Ship Support Alliance, to perform maintenance and upgrade work on Duke-class ships.

Also called T23 life extension programme, the upgrade work ensures that the RN frigates can operate beyond their original service life and remain operationally available to counter emerging maritime threats.

Babcock Support – Marine managing director Gary Simpson said: “Babcock is proud to play its part in keeping the ship operational and her crew safe and secure throughout their international deployment.

“Globally deployed capabilities play a larger role than ever in how we help to keep customers assets mission-ready, and we are tuned to deliver this.

“It’s great to see HMS Montrose back in Devonport following her illustrious tour making a real impact to global security.”

Last year in January, Babcock and Oman Drydock Company joint venture Duqm Naval Dockyard (DND) completed a double diesel engine replacement for HMS Montrose.