The UK Royal Navy’s Daring-class Type 45 air-defence destroyer, HMS Dragon, has been rededicated after successfully completing a major upgrade programme.

After being inactive for a year, the vessel was again commissioned into service during a ceremony held at Portsmouth Naval Base.

HMS Dragon commanding officer captain Craig Wood said: “An upgraded and more capable HMS Dragon has emerged from the upkeep period the result of a tremendous amount of work from across the Portsmouth enterprise.

"An upgraded and more capable HMS Dragon has emerged from the upkeep period."

"My sailors and I are rightfully proud of her return to the fleet and welcomed the opportunity to celebrate this fantastic occasion with Dragon’s sponsor, Mrs Boissier, our families and friends.“

The upgrade programme was carried out by BAE Systems and included improvements to weaponry, IT, communications and marine engineering systems, and the warship’s rudders.

As part of the modernisation programme, HMS Dragon received a fresh coat of paint with its popular 12ft tall decorative red Welsh dragons on her bow.

The destroyer is scheduled to undergo a series of sea trials in the UK to prepare for its third overseas deployment.

The vessel is the fourth of six Type 45 air defence destroyers built for the UK navy. The warship has a range of 7,000nm and can operate at a speed of 18k.

HMS Dragon is equipped with BAE Systems’ Sampson multifunction, dual-face active array radar, which assists in targeting data for the missile system.

Image: HMS Dragon being blessed by the Royal Naval Chaplain during its rededication ceremony. Photo: courtesy of Royal Navy.