UK defence issues and the odd container or two

Fore Sale – Arezzo

The MoD is selling one of the RLC’s Ramped Landing Craft

The best part of the sale document

The engines have recently been upgraded to Volvo Penta’s as have the Gearbox’s and
Generators

Well of course they have

RCL at Marchwood 740x518 Fore Sale   Arezzo
RCL at Marchwood

Read the details

 Fore Sale   Arezzo

 

 

 

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Think Defence hopes to start sensible conversations about UK defence issues, no agenda or no campaign but there might be one or two posts on containers, bridges and mexeflotes!

22 Comments

  1. tweckyspat

    Sad day. Maybe we could get together, buy it, a form a ship to shore logistics military re-enactment club ?

  2. Mike W

    TD and others

    Won’t they need a replacement for these craft which appear to be being sold off at the rate of one a year? I think there were only six of them. How many are left now I don’t know.

    However, surely the role they carried out remains the same. I have read in on or two places that the plan was to replace them by LCUs from the Royals and that they in turn would get the future fast landing craft (PACSCAT or whatever). That latter plan, though, seems to have gone by the board and so yet another yawning gap in capability seems to be looming.

  3. Daniele Mandelli

    There were 6, 4 with 17 PMR at Marchwood and 2 in Cyprus at Akrotiri Mole with 417 Maritime Troop.

    I suppose with the LCU / LCVP of the LPD’s and the LCVP / LCAC of 539 Squadron they feel they are redundant.

    I’m curious what will replace those in Cyprus though.

  4. adrian

    WHY!!!!! Yet again we sale equipment which we might need in future. We be fighting future wars with stick and stone b4 long ….

  5. x

    @ Simon

    They are ship-to-shore connectors for the RLC not really assault craft. Armies have huge logistic requirements. The RLC would send these to a port in a theatre of operations to assist cargo movement. Can’t always expect the host nation to provide everything or for ships to get in where they are needed. The RLC and its predecessors used to operate a wide variety of landing craft and small ships. Beyond the army proper there were troops ships and ships like the Roundtable class operated for the Army by the MoT/MoS. Moving the Army about the globe has never been really a RN job; the RN job was/is securing the sea so that others can use it.

    http://rfanostalgia.org/gallery3/index.php/RFA-AMPHIBIOUS/Army

  6. Slightly Agricultural

    I believe I had the “pleasure” of travelling aboard one of these off Akrotiri, one dark and stormy December eve. Never knew what type it was until now, and hope never to set foot on one again…(i’m getting seasick just thinking about the memory)

    My favourite part was the crew saying “In the event of an emergency we will issue life vests and immersion suits, and explain how to use them”. The RLC obviousy expecting a very leisurely “emergency”…

    And yes, the person who wrote that (and a powerpoint? Why!?) needs a slap, or worse, marked down in their “Leading & Communicating” competency!

  7. monkey

    @x
    Thanks for the link :-)
    Very interesting how much the RLC used to own , did they used to crew them ?

  8. Observer

    Slightly, they were writing in Milspeak, which is no known for grammar. In fact, it is a miracle that there is punctuation!

    E.g

    1x boots size 224 military, leather etc.

    Translate that into

    1x Ramped Landing craft, sale of, Arezzo.

    See the similarities with the post? :lol:

    And you got lifevests??!! Amazing.

  9. David Deakin

    How about a private enterprise car ferry between Yarmouth and Lymington on the Isle of Wight? Great scope to undercut the Wightlink monopoly!

  10. x

    @ monkey

    The smaller landing ships yes. The troops ships and the LSL (before being taken into the RFA) no they were operated on charter basis. Troop ships used to be white with a blue band.

    http://shipsandharbours.com.s3.amazonaws.com/21980.jpg

    Really just like the Points are operated now. As the world population grows proper port facilities have become more common; rather like proper tarmac and concrete runways have become more common.
    Still no excuse not for maintaining an “austere” landing capability. The Army probably had more input into the design of the Bays that the Royal Navy.

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/b/be/HMAV_Abbeville_%28L4041%29_-_Village_Bay_1_-_July_1977.jpg/1024px-HMAV_Abbeville_%28L4041%29_-_Village_Bay_1_-_July_1977.jpg

    The US Army Reserve operate 32 LCU and US Army proper 6 LSV.

  11. x

    @ Slightly Ag

    As much as I like the RLC Marine bods my abiding memory of their craft is always their untidiness. Dirty pots, wet towels, and gash. The sort of stuff that gives chiefy nightmares……….

  12. monkey

    @x
    Thanks for the update , it seems at that point we were a bit purple !
    The US JHSV are also crewed by civilians on charter I read somewhere ,do the RFA use civilian crew?

  13. Slightly Agricultural

    @Observer- Oh I am very familiar with milspeak, in fact we even have a document for it; JSP 101 – Defence Writing Standards. Which that abomination of an advert certainly doesn’t meet!

    And we didn’t get given the life vests, we were just promised the crew would dig them out from somewhere, issue them and then demonstrate how to put them on if the thing ever sank. Given I was wrapped in every warm and waterproof layer I had on me, I suspect i’d have sunk like a stone before then!

  14. x

    @ monkey

    I don’t know. I view it differently. Army logistics are an Army problem and that means they should have the systems they require to support their operations. As I said the RN’s job is to secure the sea not to move the Army about. As most here know I see the land and the sea as the ultimate delineater for who has primacy in an operation for me the air isn’t a separate sphere. I view it as as Venn diagram with the shore being the intersection. I view the RLC handling their own maritime operations in the same way as the RN having the RM. Both the Army and Navy need a (limited) capability in the other’s sphere to get the job done. For the RN the RM are the tip of spear; for the Army RLC maritime operations are the shaft of their spear.

  15. x

    @ monkey

    Yes RFA crews are civilians. Cue NaB for a discussion on the differences in ship design between an RFA and warship because of the crew’s legal status……….

  16. tweckyspat

    The trouble with the RCL was that it was neither fish nor fowl. Too large to be deck cargo or fit in the dock of a Bay class. too small and too slow to self-deploy (realistically)

    I disagree (as I would ) about the sloppy vessel state and crews; I once had the privilege of watching an RLC crane op loading mexe cells one by one from Sir Percivale (RFA) into an RCL whilst underway and in a bit of a swell. even in the lee of the RFA it needed a excellent seamanship from the RLC crew. In fact i’d go as far to say that RLC SNCO RCL skippers were generally better than RM LCU coxn’s – often simply becasue they had so much more sea-time. Likewise a RLC marine engineer versus a RN stoker. Not sure what is going to happen to the RLC MEs now ?

  17. x

    Never said they weren’t decent sailors far from it.; you have to have a good stomach to spend your days playing on the oggin in vessel with all the hydrodynamic qualities of a roasting tin. Just I think that they needed the special love only a dabtoe chief can bring to ship husbandry…….

    A few weeks back RT was talking about pre-positioning vehicles in Cyprus. I have had similar thoughts but my thought were more about prepositioning large LCT/small LCT. Nothing to ostentatious a pair of something like this in the Med and Gulf or three shared between the stations………

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lublin-class_minelayer-landing_ship

    I know, a modest choice for me………. ;)

  18. Red Trousers

    Slightly sad to see it go, I had a ride ashore in one once (bloody ages ago, crammed 2 Scimitar onto the deck, drove onto a beach on a Danish exercise area having loaded up at a civvy port about 5 miles away and pretending we had sailed all the way from Harwich).

    But I’m not hard over about who operates them.

    As for the grammar, what else do you expect from Shabby Wood commercial slugs? Honestly, most of their commercial people are getting younger and less competent on a daily basis. Must be to do with the fact that anyone competent is sniffed out by industry and quietly approached with a decent pay package and asked to jump ship. Many do, those left are younger and less experienced, and so prone to publishing a whole load of UFN*** without realising it in their commercial proposals for even large programmes.

    *** Utter Chuffing Nonsense.

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