HMS Echo home after 19 months away

The Royal Navy survey ship HMS Echo has returned home today after an epic deployment of more than a year and a half.

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Rehab Centre for servicemen to officially open in Devonport

The Endeavour Centre at Devonport. Credit: ITV News West Country

A twenty three million pound rehabilitation centre for injured servicemen and women will officially open today at Devonport. It's been paid for by the charity Help for Heroes and the Ministry of Defence.

The centre is home to a gym and swimming pool, with doctors and personal trainers on hand to help injured soldiers recover.

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Royal Navy confirms torpedo incident at Devonport

HMS Argyll Credit: Ulrich Perrey/DPA/Press Association Images

The Royal Navy has confirmed that a training torpedo was accidentally launched inside Devonport Naval base in Plymouth on Wednesday. No one was hurt in the incident in which a test torpedo was "jettisoned onto the wharf."

Royal Navy statement:

We can confirm an incident occurred onboard HMS Argyll on Wednesday 12th March at 3.24pm, while the ship was alongside at Devonport Naval Base in Plymouth.

During a training exercise, an inert Test Variant Torpedo (TVT) unexpectedly jettisoned onto the wharf. There was no explosion and no casualties.

An investigation is now under way to determine the cause of the incident.

HMS Argyll was conducting a system test when an inert Test Variant Torpedo was jettisoned unexpectedly. The torpedo is not an explosive hazard.

The specific details of the incident are subject to further investigation and it would be inappropriate to comment further.

A Test Variant Torpedo is a dummy weapon with no explosive content.

There were no casualties involved.

No one was on the jetty at the time of the firing

The torpedo caused minor damage to an adjacent security fence (inside the naval base) where it landed.

The result of the investigation will determine what actions will be necessary to avoid any repeat of this incident in the future. However, torpedo system test firing alongside in the naval base has been suspended subject to completion of the investigation.

MoD invests £150m in Devonport Dockyard

HMS Vanguard will be refuelled in Plymouth Credit: ITV News West Country

The Ministry of Defence is to invest around a £150 million at Devonport Dockyard for refuelling of Britain's nuclear submarine fleet after a leak was found in a test reactor in Scotland.

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond told the House of Commons that HMS Vanguard, Britain's oldest nuclear submarine, will be refuelled in Plymouth during its planned deep maintenance refit in 2015.

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Plymouth sailors working to stop illegal drug trade

Plymouth based HMS Portland is working to stop the flow of illegal drugs entering Africa and Europe. The frigate and its crew have been working with coastguards in Cape Verde. HMS Portland left Devonport in January for the seven month patrol.

Plymouth based HMS Portland is working with coastguards in Cape Verde to stop illegal drugs entering Africa and Europe. Credit: ITV News West Country

New life for Devonport's Market Hall

An iconic market hall building at Devonport is being given to Plymouth City Council today, along with £2.5 million to renovate it.

The hall was hidden for many years behind the old dockyard wall. The council took on the building for just £1 from the Homes and Communities Agency.

The council took on Devonport's Market Hall for just £1 from the Homes and Communities Agency.

Devonport Dockyard future

The future of the Devonport Dockyard has been discussed in Parliament. The local MP was seeking reassurances from the Defence Secretary after the news that shipbuilding is to end in nearby Portsmouth.

BAE Systems which runs Portsmouth Dockyard announced 1,700 job losses. But Gary Streeter was told, in the House of Commons, that it wouldn't affect Plymouth.

Duke of York visits Devon

The Duke of York Credit: The Royal Navy

HRH The Duke of York has opened a new education and resettlement centre at Devonport Naval base.

Prince Andrew unveiled a plaque and spoke to several servicemen and women already using the facility.

The centre is used to teach literacy, numeracy and IT, GCSE maths and English. It also provides courses for those who are planning to leave the Royal Navy and join the civilian workforce.

The Duke of York opens education and resettlement centre at Devonport Credit: The Royal Navy
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