Naval Patrol Commander's Boat Race Visit

Lieutenant Hugo Floyer of the Oxford University patrol vessel grew up in Chiswick


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A visit to London by the two University Royal Naval Unit (URNU) ships for Oxford and Cambridge has a speciail significance for one of the ship's Commanders. Lt Hugo Floyer grew up in Chiswick and says it will be a special homecoming to visit during the weekend of the historic boat race.

HMS Smiter and Trumpeter, respectively Oxford and Cambridge Universities Royal Navy Unit patrol vessels, are in London at the weekend as part of an Easter deployment with students.

Lieutenant Hugo Flyer grew up locally and attended the Chiswick Community School before leaving to go to university in Sussex. He now makes his home, still near the river, in Kingston-upon-Thames. He said he was delighted to be returning for the weekend of the famous boat race.

“It was pleasing to be able to coordinate our return across the English Channel from Belgium to London on the same weekend that our two universities do battle on the water,” said Hugo. “And, for me, it’s a chance to catch up with family and friends as well as cheer on the crews, and of course I’m very proud to bring HMS Smiter to my home town”.

“I’m sure there’ll be some friendly rivalry and banter on Sunday between Trumpeter’s crew and my own, but it will be back to navy business on Monday when we leave London to continue the deployment.”

Sailing in company, the two ships HMS Smither and Trumpeter are in the middle of their Easter deployment, which has already seen them visit ports in Belgium and the Netherlands.

They arrived in London on April 4, going alongside at London’s Royal Naval Reserve establishment HMS President, located beside Tower Bridge, and will leave again on April 7 – the remainder of their Easter training tour will include calls at Cowes, Guernsey and Brighton.

Each ship carries a full-time Royal Navy crew of five, which will be joined by up to 12 university students at any one time. The deployment will allow the students to put into practice what they have learned during short deployments and drill nights during the year.

April 5, 2014

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