It is one of the Armed Forces’ biggest exercises, testing the might of the UK Response Force Task Group... and a sailor from Rotherham is playing her part.
Cougar 13 involves several Royal Navy and Royal Fleet Auxiliary ships taking part in exercises across the Mediterranean and into the Gulf.
For seven months, Able Rate Louise Marks will be away from home - first deployed on Cougar 13 before her ship HMS Montrose moves deeper into the Gulf for a maritime engagement and security role, ensuring shipping lanes remain open.
The 27-year-old former Kimberworth Comprehensive pupil joined the Navy in 2009 and now works as a writer in the frigates office. It is her role to ensure the ship’s company are paid on time as well as looking after personnel records.
“It is tough being away from family but we email daily and I know I’m doing something to make them proud,” she said.
“My partner is currently away with the Royal Marines training to be a mountain leader, but the fact we are getting married in April helps us through.”
And she added: “It’s not all hard work and training - we have flight deck games, barbecues and theme nights.”