HMS St. Albans Gives Students an Intro to Life at Sea
Schoolchildren whose parents all serve in the Armed Forces were given an insight into life at sea after spending a day on board Type 23 frigate HMS St Albans.
The 32 youngsters, from various different schools in Portsmouth, were given a tour of the 'Saint' while alongside during her role as the Royal Navy's fleet ready escort ship.
HMS St Albans' crew took the children through the inner depths of the ship, showing them the bridge, operations room and upper deck, showing them the range of equipment they use every day.
"Today the children got a chance to see and get a real feel for the environment where their mums or dads work," said Lieutenant Commander James Thompson, HMS St Albans' logistics officer.
"The Naval Families Federation organised the visit and works closely with a lot of local schools and their after-school clubs. An opportunity like this gives the children a greater insight into what we do and how we live at sea. It explains a lot more than any phone call or video link when we're deployed."
HMS St Albans has had a successful start to her year as the Royal Navy's fleet ready escort, which means she is the first in line to react to any tasking from the UK government.
All Royal Navy ships can respond at short notice to sail and protect the UK’s interests in and around home waters, but the role of fleet ready escort means HMS St Albans is the first in line to react.
The duty involves protecting UK territorial waters, maintaining security and protecting sea lanes and UK infrastructure within our economic zone. That might include wind farms, fishing or oil platforms, plus a broad range of other activity that goes on in the seas around Britain.
“This really is a great opportunity to see what their parents get up to when they are at work,” said Rachael Osborne, head teacher of St Jude’s School.
“We are always trying to improve the provision for our service children, so it’s a good chance for us to see this environment as well. The children are remarkable and very resilient – they cope remarkably well with service life. It’s been a fantastic day.”
HMS St Albans recently visited London to celebrate International Women's Day and National Apprenticeship Week. The frigate spent four days alongside, taking part in events and hosting visitors to learn more about the work of the Royal Navy.
“It was really nice being on the ship, I liked the fire hose bit, it was awesome. My daddy works on this ship and I liked the control room and the biscuits,” said Orin Walker (6) from Solent Infants School.