Notwithstanding the low temperatures, the drizzle and the grey late-autumn weather it’s been a busy day on the waters off Penarth today.
At Cardiff Docks – being manoeuvered through the Queen Alexandra Dock lock at lunchtime was the Type 23 frigate HMS Richmond at the conclusion of her weekend visit to Cardiff.
HMS Richmond was towed out of the docks with the tug Tradesman going stern-first on her bow to ease the warship out to open water . On Saturday Richmond’s crew were out on the streets of Cardiff helping the Royal British Legion launch its annual Poppy Appeal in the run-up to Remembrance Sunday next weekend.
The ship was also open to the public whilst she was moored in Cardiff Docks at Britannia Quay – (so-named after the Royal Yacht Britannia).
HMS Richmond cast off from her tugs just off Penarth Pier and powered-off down channel. Her destination was not disclosed.
Meanwhile a new regular visitor to Penarth Quays Marina today is a vessel that’s just too wide (at 6.7 metres beam) to squeeze through the Marina’s lock. She is the 140-ton Smit Towy military operations ship – which will be based at Penarth Marina for two months.
Because of her size she’s being berthed on the dolphins outside Penarth Marina’s lock gates and is striking sight for passers-by.
The Smit Towy is acting as a training platform for the new HM Coastguard helicopters based at MoD St Athan.
Special arrangements are having to be made to re-fuel the big ship in situ at the dolphins – which means having to close the Penarth Quays Marina lock for about an hour or so each week whilst refuelling is under way.
This morning out on the channel there was another case of a helping-hand being given to a broken down boat – which saved the expense of a call-out for Penarth Lifeboat.
The local trawler Our Louise took the fishing boat Dauphin III under tow out in the channel and brought her safely into Cardiff Bay .
Off Penarth Head Dauphin III was secured alongside to enable Our Louise to manoeuver her through one of the Cardiff Bay barrage locks.