HMAS Stuart recently visited Singapore’s Sembawang Naval Base to participate in the harbour phase of Exercise BERSAMA LIMA. Ship’s company took the opportunity to experience a variety of cultural and sporting activities around Singapore.
Personnel onboard were given the choice of several activities, including free access to Universal Studios, Singapore Zoo, SEA Aquarium, Adventure Cove Water Park, Gardens by the Bay and Singapore Flyer.
There were also several sporting activities, including rugby against HMNZS Te Mana, soccer, golf and cycling. Stuart participated wholeheartedly in the BERSAMA LIMA sports day, winning the tug of war and finishing second overall.
Commanding Officer Stuart, Commander Chris Leece, said the safe and successful port visit was crucial to ensure a healthy and happy crew upon sailing for the next phase of the North East Asia Deployment (NEAD).
“I am very pleased with how well we have represented the Australian Navy and everyone has certainly enjoyed this visit thoroughly,” CMDR Leece said.
“Personnel respite is a key contributor towards morale and as a result, their ability to support the Navy’s mission. The fact that Fleet Command contributes funds towards cultural and sporting activities certainly allowed us to get the most out of the visit.”
Assistant Maritime Logistics Officer Stuart, Sub Lieutenant Ellie Johnston, took the lead in arranging the smooth and successful delivery of the funding for cultural and sporting activities. She said that the Fleet Command initiative to allocate funds to assist participation in a variety of activities around Singapore was a fantastic way to enable ship's company to explore and experience this popular port. The ship’s Welfare Committee also contributed some funds.
“A ‘choose your own Singapore adventure’ style package was designed for ship's company, allowing people to experience two to three activities across the two weeks that Stuart spent in Singapore,” said SBLT Johnston.
“These activities were thoroughly enjoyed by Stuart personnel and contributed to the success of the port visit.”
Stuart will now proceed to the sea phase of Exercise BERSAMA LIMA as part of the Five Power Defence Agreement (FPDA). The FPDA is a multilateral organisation that fosters interoperability amongst Australia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore and the United Kingdom.