Chief of the Defence Staff visits Royal Navy in Bahrain

General Sir Nicholas Houghton GCB CBE ADC Gen, Chief of the Defence Staff, was recently welcomed to the Royal Navy’s Gulf headquarters in Bahrain by Commodore Keith Blount OBE Royal Navy, the most senior Royal Navy officer in the region, before meeting Royal Navy sailors onboard HMS Shoreham.

Commodore Blount escorted General Houghton to the Royal Navy’s support facility in Manama, where he addressed more than 120 Royal Navy personnel from the UK’s naval headquarters as well as those serving in ships based in Bahrain.

General Houghton was then welcomed onboard HMS Shoreham, a Sandown-class minehunter based in Bahrain, by Lieutenant Commander Simon Kelly Royal Navy, the ship’s Commanding Officer, where he met with members of the Ship’s Company and witnessed a demonstration of the ship’s capabilities.

General Houghton said: “The Royal Navy and the mine hunters based here in Bahrain play a vital role in support of the UK’s security and defence interests in the Gulf. 

"I am delighted to have had the opportunity to meet the professional men and women of the Navy both in the headquarters and HMS Shoreham and to get a first hand view of the crucial operations they are undertaking. 

Lieutenant Commander Kelly said: “To have the opportunity to allow my Ship’s Company’s to demonstrate their professionalism and the capability of our ship to the Chief of the Defence Staff was a real honour.  

"I am very proud of what HMS Shoreham and the other ships are doing in the Gulf and I think the General now has a real feel for the way in which we operate in this challenging and dynamic environment.”