The UK Royal Navy has commissioned the newest River-class Batch 2 offshore patrol vessel (OPV), HMS Tamar, during a ceremony in Portsmouth.

Tamar is the fourth of five River-class Batch 2 OPVs designed, built and delivered to the service by BAE Systems.

It arrived from BAE Systems’ shipyard on the Clyde in Scotland in March this year. It was formally named as HMS Tamar at a ceremony in Glasgow last year.

Tamar commanding officer lieutenant commander Michael Hutchinson said: “Today’s commissioning ceremony is the culmination of a huge amount of work by a crew which has worked tirelessly throughout the Covid pandemic and all those who have supported us here in Portsmouth and beyond, and it is my privilege to be Tamar’s first Commanding Officer.

“We’ve transformed Tamar and her ship’s company into an effective force since moving on board earlier in the year and we’re eager to take her into active operations wherever we are sent.”

Since Tamar’s crew took custody of the patrol ship, they have completed operational sea training, hosted visitors and conducted new technology demonstrations.

The crew also worked extensively with Royal Marines on boarding tactics.

Addressing the ship’s company, Tamar sponsor Lady Brigitte Peach said: “From the moment you, the ship’s company, came on board she has impressed everyone who has seen her. I have been hugely impressed by the hard-working and incredibly welcoming crew. As you take your place in the Fleet, I wish you well.”

The remaining vessels are HMS Forth, HMS Medway, HMS Trent and HMS Spey.

In October this year, HMS Spey left Glasgow shipyard to its new home at Portsmouth Naval Base.