After 9 months operating as part of the Royal Australian Navy Fleet, Spanish Armada Ship, 'ESPS Cantabria' was farewelled from her temporary homeport of Garden Island, Sydney. The ship will be visiting ports in Indonesia, India and Turkey before arriving home for Christmas.
Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Ray Griggs, AO, CSC, RAN joined the Spanish Ambassador to Australia, HE Mr Enrique Viguera, Commander Australian Fleet, Rear Admiral Tim Barrett AM, CSC, RAN and Consul-General of Spain, Alvaro Iranzo Gutierrez on the wharf to acknowledge the bonds developed between the nations.
“Today marks the conclusion of a very successful deployment. Cantabria integrated very effectively into the Royal Australian Navy Fleet and completed everything asked of her with great flexibility and efficiency,” said Vice Admiral Griggs.
“The ship provided the RAN with underway replenishment capability conducting over 58 replenishments, and a chance for over 234 Navy personnel to familiarise themselves with some of the systems we are about to acquire in our new Canberra Class Landing Helicopter Dock ships and the Hobart Class Air Warfare Destroyers.”
“The ground breaking initiative is testament to spirit of cooperation and collaboration that exists between the Spanish Armada and the Royal Australian Navy and is a good example of ‘Smart Defence’,” added Admiral Griggs.
Pictured: USS Chosin (right) conducting a breakaway after conducting a Replenishment at Sea Approach (RASAP) with ESPS Cantabria(Left); KD Jebat (center) is in the lifeguard station.