The Irish Naval Services new vessel the LÉ William Butler Yeats is to be twinned with Galway city next month. The Taoiseach will be officiating the twinning ceremony on 17th October at the Galway Docks.
This will be the second time the city has been twinned with an Irish naval vessel, continuing their long standing naval relationship. The city had previously been twinned with the LE Aisling, which was recently decommissioned after 36 years of service. LÉ William Butler Yeats replaces her joining the ranks of the Irish Naval Service which is celebrating its 70th anniversary since founding.
LÉ William Butler Yeats was built at Appledore Shipyards in Devon is the third Samuel Beckett-class offshore patrol vessel (OPV), joining the LÉ Samuel Beckett, commissioned in 2014 and LÉ James Joyce, commissioned in 2015. These OPV’s are primarily deployed in fishery protection, search and rescue and maritime patrol missions in the 200-mile Irish Economic Exclusion Zone.
Vital stats: Length 90 metres, -Weight 1,933 tonnes – Top speed 23 knots
A proposal has been made to convert the recently decommissioned LE Aisling into a floating museum for Galway city but negotiations are still on going and two countries have expressed interest in acquiring the ship.