Truro’s affiliated ship helps protect Pacific paradise

28 February 2024

Photo Copyright – Royal Navy

Currently on deployment in the Far East and Australasia, the crew of HMS Tamar has been helping to protect the environment of the most isolated islands on the planet.

Patrol ship HMS Tamar, which is affiliated with the city, spent five days in and around the tiny Pacific island of Pitcairn, carrying out sovereignty patrols in the waters, the fourth largest Marine Protected Area in the world, gathering water samples for scientists to analyse the impact of climate change and helping the islanders to deal with decades -old explosives.

The 2.8 square mile island – roughly the same size as Lundy or Lindisfarne and a wildlife haven -is famous as the destination of the mutineers of HMS Bounty and remains inhabited by the descendants of the ship’s crew.

Two experts from the Royal Navy’s Portsmouth-based Diving and Threat Exploitation Group to deal with decades-old explosives.

Specialists from Tamar found more than 1,100 detonators and over three kilometres of detonating cord, left over from construction of the island’s small harbour in the 1970s, which were safely disposed of by a series of controlled explosions in a sheltered bay.

The crew also helped with the construction of Pitcairn’s new community centre and offered advice on maritime infrastructure and the boats used to ferry stores between visiting supply ships and the harbour.

The visit ended with an invite to a banquet in the main square followed by the  crew hosting a lunch on board the ship as a thank you to the islanders for their for their hospitality.

“We are very proud of the city’s links to HMS Tamar and it was fascinating to hear about their visit to Pitcairn Island” said Truro Mayor Carol Swain.

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