She’s arguably one of Canada’s most expensive military assets, but for a few hours this week, the HMCS Ville de Quebec was all Cornwall.
The warship, a frigate and one of the backbones of the Atlantic fleet, was tied up at the Cornwall Harbour as part of a Great Lakes tour that has given rank and file Canadians a chance to see what their tax dollars are spent on.
The tour is part of a multi-city Canadian and American tour that included stops in Toronto, Hamilton, Toledo and Montreal, among a slew of others.
It’s part of the Canadian navy’s effort to bring a part of the navy inland, and strut its stuff.
“We can bring the navy to Canadians inside the country,” said the ship’s second in command, Lt.-Cmdr. Jean Couillard. “They don’t get to see what their tax dollars are being used to support.
“They know we are out there protecting their interests.”
Cornwallites got a chance to see the ship from bow to stern, including her missile batteries, main gun, the bridge and operations centre.
Couillard said the tour is much like “putting a round peg into a square hole” in that crew members are used to “missions” like a recent deployment overseas where the Ville de Quebec helped guard against pirate attacks off the coast of Somalia.
“They get to (communicate) with interior Canadians,” he said, adding members of the crew love to “show off” their ship.
Ville de Quebec is heading east along the St. Lawrence Seaway and wraps up its tour next month when it returns to Halifax.
For more on the ship, check out a slideshow on our homepage, and visit the ship’s website at www.navy.forces.gc.ca/villedequebec/1/1-s_eng.asp.
Displacement: 4750 tonnes
Complement: 225 all ranks
– length overall: 134.1 m
– beam: 16.4 m
– draught: 4.9 m
– navigational draught: 7.5 m
1 Propulsion diesel engine Pielstick and two gas turbine engines LM 2500
Speed: greater than 27 knots
– Torpedos : MK46 mod 5A Honeywell
– Missiles : 16 surface-air Sea Sparrow vertical launch missiles
– 8 surface-surface Harpoon missiles
– Gun : 1 Bofors 57mm MK2 gun
– 1 Close-in weapons system (CIWS)Phalanx 20 mm MK15