Senior admiral thanks Gulf minehunters’ crucial shore-side support team

Britain’s second most senior admiral dropped in on a new support team helping Royal Navy minehunter missions in the Gulf. Fleet Commander Vice Admiral Philip Jones thanked the ongoing efforts of the Mine Counter-measures Support Team in Bahrain in assisting the four mine warfare ships permanently based there.

Despite the plethora of combat fatigues and a fork-lift truck these men and women are sailors – sailors who provide crucial support to the Royal Navy’s minehunters in the Gulf.

Joining them in Bahrain is the second most senior admiral in the Service, Vice Admiral Philip Jones, to thank them for their efforts.

The Fleet Commander has been calling on Royal Navy ships and units east of Suez – which is the Senior Service’s crucible of effort presently with over a dozen warships, auxiliaries, squadrons or detachments either based or on patrol there.

Among the smaller detachments is the Mine Counter-measures Support Team in Bahrain which formed in November to give logistical support to HM Ships Ramsey, Shoreham, Quorn and Atherstone, the four-strong minehunting force permanently stationed in the kingdom.

This new organisation, which is based on the waterfront at Mina Salman port, is led by logistics officer Lt Pippa Hannaby, assisted by WO1 Paul Buckley and a small team of supply chain senior and junior rates. They’re dedicated to helping the minehunters – but they will offer support to other RN and Royal Fleet Auxiliary ships if needed.

“The team stood up in November with a large number of issues in the backlog tray and I believe by the time Admiral Jones visited we had achieved our aim of being a productive team valued by our minehunters,” said Lt Hannaby.

WO1 Buckley added: “The team at the waterfront as a whole provides a fully comprehensive level of operational support to each of the four ships – we’re dealing with all manner of things in both a proactive and reactive way on a daily basis.”

The support team has achieved a lot in the short time they have been established but there is still work to be done as the first team near the end of their rotation they can be confident that they have built a strong relationship with the rest of the RN community in the Gulf and a strong foundation for their successors.

The team at the waterfront as a whole provides a fully comprehensive level of operational support to each of the four ships

WO1 Paul Buckley, Mine Counter-measures Support Team in Bahrain