The ORS Int. is the official adjudicator of ocean rowing records for Guinness World Records


Text Box: Fleet Command


CUMB 07/05



BFPO 261



RELEASE DATE: 12 August 2005



Whilst on passage to take up her duties as Atlantic Patrol Ship North, HMS CUMBERLAND came across the Miss Olive Virgin Atlantic solo rowing vessel 500 miles north west of the Azores.

Mr Oliver Hicks, 23, on board Miss Olive Virgin Atlantic saw the Devonport based Type 22 frigate on the horizon and contacted the ship requesting assistance. He was taking part in a solo rowing challenge to cross the Atlantic and has been at sea for 76 days since leaving Atlantic Highlands, just north of New York and had experienced severe weather conditions. He was expected back at Falmouth after 52 days and only had provisions left to last him until the end of August. His revised arrival date back in Falmouth is now the end of September/early October.

The Commanding Officer of HMS CUMBERLAND, Captain Simon Ancona, offered Mr Hicks food and provisions to last him until his arrival in the United Kingdom. Captain Ancona said, “it was a brave decision to attempt to cross the Atlantic single handedly but sometimes these things do not go according to plan and the maritime environment can be most unforgiving. Luckily HMS CUMBERLAND was on hand to lend assistance and we were delighted to do so”. Mr Hicks said “ he was overjoyed at the sight of the British warship heading towards him offering help”.

HMS CUMBERLAND was on her fifth day of a 4 month deployment to the Caribbean in order to conduct humanitarian aid and disaster relief assistance if required, as well as Counter Drug Operations.


Notes to the Editors:

1 Near realtime footage is available.

2. HMS CUMBERLAND is a Type 22 Class frigate with a length of 148m and displacing over 4000 tonnes. Her crew of 250 operate the latest weapons and communication systems including the Seawolf close air defence system and 4.5 inch gun. Equipped with the Lynx type Anti-Surface helicopter, the ship is well placed to provide extended range support for relief operations.

3. For further information please contact one of the following:

• Lieutenant Commander Simon Dalziel at FLEET Media on 07748 932702
• Lieutenant Commander Eme Onyike (Public Relations Officer) in HMS CUMBERLAND by email on
• MOD Duty Press Officer on 020 7218 7907

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