HMS Diamond has left Portsmouth for a 9-month deployment.
The type-45 frigate, fresh from an extensive overhaul, will patrol the Gulf, taking over from HMS Monmouth.
The ship is a hive of activity with last minutes stores being loaded including rounds of ammunition for small arms and indeed the larger weaponry systems.
That’s because a 9-month deployment to the gulf, although routine, can never be without the potential for danger.
The ship aims to protect sea lanes through the Gulf, thus maintaining UK trade.
HMS Diamond will work with NATO partners, including the US Carrier Strike Group and maintain and develop ties with partners in the region.
This is described as a young ship, with a significant proportion of the ship’s company deploying for the first time.
Type 45’s have come in for criticism for unreliability, particularly with their propulsion systems and in hotter conditions.
About a mile away from HMS Diamond, families and friends of those deploying have gathered at the Round Tower at the harbour entrance, to say a final goodbye.
At just after 12 o’clock, HMS Diamond appears and makes steady progress.
The crew line the deck, in procedure alpha, a chance for a final wave.