HMS Enterprise

HMS Enterprise

HMS Enterprise was launched at Appledore in Devon in 2002 and is designed to carry out a wide range of survey work, including support to submarine and amphibious operations.

Add to favourites

Enterprise's survey motor boat, SMB Spitfire, is capable of operating independently from the ship, supporting a small group of surveyors who can live and work ashore to carry out large-scale or beach surveys.

She is the second Royal Navy ship (after sister HMS Echo) to use azimuth thrusters, where the propellers are part of a swivelling pod, allowing for precise manoeuvring.

She is also capable of acting as home for a mine countermeasures command team.

Since her first operational overseas deployment to the Mediterranean in late 2004, Enterprise has worked in the Gulf of Aden and Somali Basin, through West Africa to the Republic of South Africa, and off Iraq.

She set out in September 2013 with a new state-of-the-art survey motor launch, for a nine-month deployment to carry out survey work in the Middle East, updating maritime charts for all seafarers. 

Sailors and Royal Marines recognised for outstanding efforts as operational honours list revealed


HMS Enterprise Latest News

HMS Enterprise home after three years away


Enterprise finds ‘an over-abundance of cuteness’ surveying South Georgia

See all news for HMS Enterprise

Current operation Alongside in Devonport

Currently alongside in her home port of Devonport Naval Base.

  • Maritime Security

    British ships and units are committed to operations in the Mediterranean. Operations focus on maritime security, reassurance and wider regional engagement to build regional maritime capability as well as providing humanitarian assistance as required.

  • Alongside in Devonport

    Alongside in her home port of Devonport Naval Base.

Location Plymouth

prev next

Unit History

The First Enterprise1705

The first was a prize, the French 6th Rate 24-gun L’Enterprise, taken by the 50-gun HMS Triton in May 1705. Mainly patrolling the Med. She was lost with all hands on 12 October 1707 off Thornton.

The Second Enterprise1709

A two-decked 44-gun 5th Rate, launched on 24 April 1709, she took part in the doomed expedition against the French in Canada in 1711.

The Third and Fourth Enterprises1741

The next Enterprise never came to fruition; she was renamed Liverpool in 1741. Three years later the 4th spending much of her active service in the Caribbean was broken up in 1771.

The Fifth and Sixth Enterprises1775

Enterprise number five was captured by the Americans on 14 May 1775 on the Richelieu River. Number six was launched 1774. She served as a convoy escort in the American War of Independence.

The Seventh Enterprise1778

The seventh Enterprise was launched on 10 August 1778. In 1804 she was converted to a floating battery, and in April 1806 she assumed the duties of her predecessor in London.

The Eighth and Ninth Enterprises1824

Number eight was a wooden paddle gunvessel built in 1824 and in service until 1830. Number 9 was launched 5 April 1848 taking part in the search for Sir John Franklin’s lost Arctic expedition.

The Tenth and Eleventh Enterprises1862

A 670-ton wooden screw sloop was laid down in May 1861, was renamed and later cancelled in July 1862. At the same time, a vessel, originally theCircassian was renamed Enterprise 1864.

The Twelfth Enterprise1919

The 12th Enterprise was completed March 1926, serving in the East Indies until 1937. She was recommissioned on the outbreak of war as part in the bombardment force at Normandy.

The Penultimate Enterprise1958

Enterprise was launched on 30 September 1958, surveying the shallows, sandbanks and coastline of Eastern England and the English Channel. She became known as the Starship.

Queen Elizabeth Class Aircraft Carriers Future

An island nation needs a powerful navy. A simple fact, often forgotten. Go behind the scenes of the new aircraft carrier and discover its true scale and ambition.

Read about the new carrier

Commanding Officer Philip Harper

Philip Harper

Rank: Commander

Commander Philip Harper took command of HMS Enterprise in November 2016. He is an associate fellow of both the Royal Institute of Navigation and the Nautical Institute.

Previous units

Download full profile


HMS Enterprise Freedom Parade Tiverton



Spes aspera levat - Hope lightens difficulties

HMNB Devonport

Learn more