COMMODORE Steve Dainton was welcomed to the Rock at the local naval base by MoD personnel.

The changeover of the top ranked military position on the Rock came as former CBF Tim Henry left Gibraltar aboard HMS Sabre.

Henry, who will be remembered for his role in the COVID-19 crisis, will now take over as an Assistant Chief of Staff at the NATO HQ in Belgium.

Commander British Forces Handover From Cdre Tim Henry To Cdre Steven Dainton
CONTRAST: Tim Henry passes over the CBF baton to Steve Dainton

Cdre Dainton was welcomed by the Royal Gibraltar Regiment which he inspected dutifully before speaking to Ministry of Defence staff.

“I am delighted to have arrived in Gibraltar, taking over as Commander British Forces,” said Liverpool-born Dainton.

“It is an honour and a privilege to be here and I look forward to working with each and every one of you.”

Big arrival

A significant number of Gibraltarians work in the Ministry of Defence, although much less than in the eighties when 60% were employed there.

There are a few hundred permanent and temporary UK staff in the British Territory, helping run the RAF, navy and army operations there.

Commander British Forces Handover From Cdre Tim Henry To Cdre Steven Dainton
WELCOME: MoD workers line the terraces at the Gibraltar naval base

Dainton arrived on the Rock after attending the Royal College of Defence Studies in 2019.

His last major military role was as Component UK commander fighting terrorism and piracy in the Middle East.

Having joined the Royal Navy in 1987 he has been at the helm of a number of warships and led the evacuation from Benghazi in Libya.

On the lighter side, he wants to improve his golfing skills while enjoying football and rugby.

As a lifelong Everton fan, he is likely to spark up some rivalry with Chief Minister Fabian Picardo who supports League Champions Liverpool FC.

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