Welcoming the Ship, UK’s High Commissioner in Banjul, David Belgrove OBE said:
“I am delighted that the Royal Navy Patrol Vessel HMS Trent is visiting Banjul again to liaise with the Gambian Armed Forces. This visit demonstrates the strong partnership between the UK and the Gambian military, jointly enhancing our ability to address shared security threats and celebrating the enduring friendship between our two countries,” he said.
Whilst in The Gambia, HMS Trent’s embarked Royal Marine Boarding Team (RMBT) will continue the work and follow up on previous exercises conducted with the Gambian Armed Forces and 42 Commando. The RMBT will share best practice with the Gambian Armed Forces in areas including Vessel Boarding, Search and Seizure. The visit of HMS Trent has been timed to coincide with the visit of a Royal Navy Short Term Training Team who will be working with their Gambian Navy counterparts to enhance their capacity to counter threats to maritime security in The Gambia.
In addition to the RMBT’s packed schedule, HMS Trent will host tours of the ship to members of The Gambian Armed Forces and senior Gambian officials – demonstrating the ship’s capabilities through her on board assets including deployable sea-boats and embarked maritime forces.
HMS Trent’s Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Commander Mike Rydiard said:
“This is HMS TRENT’s second visit to The Gambia. Our crew of 70 Sailors and Royal Marines are looking forward to working alongside the Gambian Armed Forces and experiencing The Gambia and meeting its people. For those who were here during our last visit in December 2021, they will be renewing old acquaintances.”
TRENT’s Maritime Security Operations across West Africa and the Gulf of Guinea are made possible through regional engagement, improving our awareness and understanding of the area. We therefore have a full programme of hosting on board, military planning, partner force training and exercising at sea that we will complete during this exciting visit.”
After visiting The Gambia, HMS Trent will continue to patrol and visit other countries in the region. HMS Trent is one of five Royal Navy patrol ships which are currently operating around the world in areas of critical importance to the UK, as part of the Royal Navy’s new Forward Presence programme.