Joint Support Ships to be renamed Protecteur and Preserver

Navy News / September 26, 2017

The Royal Canadian Navy’s (RCN) Joint Support Ships (JSS), its future Auxiliary, Oiler and Replenishment (AOR) vessels, will be known as Protecteur-class ships.

The renaming of the JSS to Protecteur and Preserver by the RCN recognizes the distinguished and remarkable service provided by its past Protecteur-class ships that have carried these names. The renaming perpetuates the Battle Honours awarded to the forbearers of these ships and allows the future ships to add their own Battle Honours to the Preserver and Protecteur legacy.

“Remembering the RCN’s history is a way we can honour those who served, and ensure we do not forget lessons of the past as we make decisions in the future,” said Defence Minister Harjit S. Sajjan. “To many Canadians in the navy community, the names Protecteur and Preserver evoke pride in Canada’s naval history, heritage and identity. I have no doubt that the future Protecteur and Preserver will continue to serve Canadians with distinction.”

In October 2013, the Government of Canada announced that the JSS ships would be named the Queenston class. Since that announcement, the original purpose-built AORs, the former Protecteur and Preserver, were paid off and are no longer part of the RCN’s fleet.

This fact presented the RCN, through its Ships Naming Committee, an opportunity to consider reusing the names of the original AORs, an option that was not available when the JSS were originally named in 2013. 

“As we move forward with the future fleet of the RCN, we will do so without forgetting where we come from and where we have been,” said Vice-Admiral Ron Lloyd, Commander RCN. “Many sailors in the RCN, both serving and retired, have strong bonds to the former HMC Ships Protecteur and Preserver. This renaming serves as a tribute to the dedication and sacrifices of the generations of sailors who have served in the past ships of the Protecteur class.”

The last ships to bear the name Protecteur and Preserver were brought into service in 1969 and 1970, then paid off in 2015 and 2016 respectively.  

The new JSS Protecteur will perpetuate two Battle Honours: GULF AND KUWAIT and ARABIAN SEA. Preserver will perpetuate one Battle Honour: ARABIAN SEA.

JSS will provide at-sea replenishment capabilities, limited sealift capacity, and support to operations ashore.