The Government has announced that RFA Argus, probably the best known vessel calling at Falmouth, will remain in service beyond 2030 after she was supposed to be decommissioned in 2024.

Whether or not the escalating war between Russia and Ukraine, or the strengthening of NATO in Eastern Europe, played a part in the decision is an unknown factor.

Argus is an aviation training vessel/Primary Casualty Receiving Ship of the Royal Fleet Auxiliary.

With a 100-bed medical complex on board, she acts as a floating medical facility during times of crisis or war but is not classed as a hospital ship under the Geneva Convention.

A&P Falmouth is responsible for maintaining and supporting Argus, HMS Scott, Lyme Bay, Mounts Bay and Cardigan Bay under the terms of the Future In-Service Support contract which runs until 2028.

Now 50 years old, Argus has a distinguished record since being completed in Italy in 1981 and requisitioned by the MoD for the Falklands War of 1982.

Acquired by the MOD after the conflict, she underwent a massive conversion at Belfast before entering service with the RFA.

She has taken part in many operational theatres including first Gulf War in 1991, Bosnia (1993), Kosovo (1999), Sierra Leone (2001), second Gulf War (2003) and off Sierra leone supporting military personnel sent o help control the Ebola outbreak in 2014.

Argus sailed from Falmouth on this mission and returned to a triumphant welcome on her return.