Starfleet has many famous names that have helped to forge the Federation and pioneer exporation and discovery. Amongst them are: Enterprise, Columbia, Challenger, Discovery, Constellation, Eagle, Hood, Yorktown, Intrepid and one of the most famous of them all: Valiant. There has been a legacy of the name Valiant going back to a Twentieth Century battleship and nuclear hunter-killer submarine. As humanity moved into the stars, one of the first ships to push back the unknown was named Valiant, followed by a Daedalus class warp 7 starship NCC-235. A Baton Rouge class NCC-1223 was lost over Eminiar VII in 2217, as James T. Kirk and the Enterprise discovered in the 2260s.
By the 2250s, the name Valiant was ready for resurrection.
The Constitution class heavy cruiser was designed in the 2240s and the first two vessels were launched in 2245 at the height of the Four Year War with the Klingons. This design was adapted to win a war from an original blueprint for an explorer. After the war was concluded, the Constitution class could resume construction and operation for what it was intended: exploration, diplomacy and discovery. Valiant was one of the names on the list to be resurrected with this frontline starship class. NCC-1623 was laid down in Vickers fleet yards in Barrow-in-Furness in England. This yard was famous for building warships and submarines, now it was turning to building the latest vessel to have this illustrious name. The starship had her keel laid in 2243 and was completed in 2248. The starship was launched with great fanfare and conducted her shakedown around the solar system
The vessel was destined to only serve for one deep space mission. Decorated starship commander Peter Thompson joined the starship as her captain; Thompson was a veteran starship commander who had been decorated for a handful of First Contact missions and had served with honour in the Four Years War. With over forty member worlds and a network of over a dozen starbases, the Valiant was assigned to expand the frontier of the Federation and to contact the many worlds and empires on their borders. The Romulan border was still quiet from the Treaty of Cheron in 2160; the Klingon border had quietened down after the humiliating defeat at the Battle of Axanar. The Federation Council and Starfleet Command were concerned at the possible build up of military resources by the Klingons; the D-7 Koro class battlecruiser was now in full production and the Starfleet Admiralty wanted to monitor the evolution of the Klingon battlefleet. The Four Year War showed Starfleet that it too needed to modernise. The Constitution class of starship was the new flagship brand and it was the frontline ambassador to sell the utopia of the United Federation of Planets.
A Cold War was brewing with the Klingon Empire and Starfleet knew that they had a limited window to explore into the frontier, before the Klingons would re-gain their brazen expansionist ways. Early Constitution class members like Constitution, Enterprise, Constellation, Lexington, Furious and Invincible would all be put to immediate use, set to deep space missions as the most desirable posts in Starfleet. Captains such as April and Garth were building on their legendary status, reverting back to their primary training as explorers and casting off - for the most part - their latter role as warrior. Mysterious races were heard of and needed to be approached: the Tholians, the Breen, the Mirak and the Lyrans, to name but a few. The Valiant was to report to Starbase 25 and the Ferasan De-militarised Zone, before the Klingon border.
U.S.S. Valiant, NCC-1623, was lost with all hands in 2254. The exact cause of her loss was never determined, although numerous rumours of a covert mission along - or even into - the Klingon Empire are rife but unproven.
Author notes: The NCC-number was taken from Greg Jein's list from his T-Negative magazine article. My Potemkin was in 2249. Constitution class lost in the 2250s or 60s. The lack of name on the Original Twelve list suggests this older ship was destroyed or lost. Need a loss in 2250s I think – otherwise too many Constitution all lost in a handful of years.
2248 - Shakedown
2249 – 2254 - Captain Peter Thompson.
2254 - Lost.
After the loss of NCC-1623, Starfleet Command looked to revive the name. Starfleet had lost other names along the way and they wanted some of them resurrecting. NCC-1731 was a Constitution class built to Bon Homme Richard subclass specs. and re-named from U.S.S. La Vengeance during construction to rapidly replace the lost 1623. The Vickers Fleet Yard at Barrow-in-Furness was chosen again as a matter of pride to build a new Valiant. The hull that was to become NCC-1731 was laid down in 2254 to the new Bon Homme Richard subclass standards and was launched on September 15th 2258. She was referred to by some as Valiant II and featured upgrades created rom the lessons of the earlier missions of her older sister starships. She went into shakedown immediately under Captain Hannah Cruise and after ironing out the bugs she was assigned to her first deep space mission in 2260.
The sixties was a decade of change and hope for the Federation. The Cold War with the Klingons had developed into a rivalry that would be felt across the Beta Quadrant and into the Alpha one as well. Starfleet was revising it's mission and looks ready for the centenary of the United Federation of Planets in 2261. New design uniforms in the three primary divisional colours of red, gold and blue were rolled out as well as upgraded phasers and tricorders.
Highlights of the 60s Valiant:
Klingon build up to Organia.
Return of the Romulans.
Tholian and Klingon drive in the Taurus Reach and Vanguard region.
Valiant was upgraded to Endeavour subclass specifications in early 2271 and her old technology configuration was freshened up whilst the Enterprise subclass was draughted by Commander Scott and his team. As one of the older members of the Constitution class, Valiant was entered into the programme to be upgraded with new warp engines and kept in service cover the period whilst others were refurbished with new technology and linear warp drive. The Valiant was one of the starships re-deployed during the V'ger crisis to ensure none of the neighbouring nations took advantage of the situation. NCC-1731 was involved in the Mirak War of 2275, proving herself not only as a vessel of diplomacy but also defending the colonies in the region where necessary. Captain Mark Bennett displayed the best values of Starfleet in exploration of the unknown, investgating all avenues of diplomacy and protecting the innocent.
Taal Tan Campaign last as Endeavour subclass.
Valiant was later rebuilt to Enterprise subclass in early 2280s.
Tabula Rasa Campaign
Klingon Civil War
Praxis and Khitomer
Hero of the Terajuni Crisis of 2294.
2259 - Shakedown.
2260 – 2265 - Captain Hannah Cruise.
2266 – 2271
2271 Refit to Endeavour subclass
2272 – 2277 - Captain Mark Bennett
2278 – 2283
2284 - Refit to Enterprise subclass.
2291 – 2295 - Captain Al Matthews and the famous mission including the explosion of Praxis, Khitomer and the Terajuni Crisis.
2295 - Upgraded to Levant subclass.
2296 – 2301
2302 – 2307
2308 - Placed into reserve.
2310 - Stricken from registry.
Valiant crew 2294:
Commanding officer: Captain Al Matthews.
Chief Medical Officer:
Starship finished with Star Trek VI bridge (minus digital clocks) as upgraded Enterprise subclass Bridge from 2280s. Operations Officer gained with the refits of the 2280s. Shuttlecraft names.
NCC-20000 Oberth class successor to the Enterprise subclass version that was deemed life expired by 2310.
Valiant namesakes I have seen:
Class 50 locomotive 50 015 Valiant
at the East Lancashire Railway:
Valiant class nuclear submarine SSN-102 HMS Valiant
at Devonport naval base 2006: