It will allow the MOD to continue progressing the project’s demonstration phase, with additional investment for detailed design work, the purchase of essential equipment and setting up shore-based testing facilities. This demonstrates an enduring commitment to the programme, centred on the Clyde, which will benefit suppliers across the UK including companies in Fife, Midlothian, Derbyshire, Warwickshire, West Yorkshire, Hampshire, Dorset, Bristol and Leicestershire.
Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said:
These highly advanced ships will help keep Britain safe and support our ship-building industry. Investing in them is part of our plan to increase defence spending so our Armed Forces have the most modern equipment they need.
Key equipment purchases will include diesel generators; sonar domes, which form the bow-mounted sonar used for Anti-Submarine detection; helicopter handling equipment to control the movement of aircraft to/from the hanger; mission bay side doors, for the loading/unloading of equipment; and the stabiliser and steering gear system, key elements of the T26 navigation system. These will all provide further work for the Type 26 Global Combat Ship supply chain.
Meanwhile, shore-based testing facilities will assess key parts of the ship’s power and propulsion system and the Combat System.
The Type 26 Global Combat Ship will replace in time the Type 23 Frigates, and will undertake the Royal Navy’s three core roles - warfighting, maritime security and international engagement - worldwide.
Together with two additional Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs), making five OPVs in total, and the planned light General Purpose Frigate, the warships will be a key element of the UK’s defence, specialising in Anti-Submarine Warfare.
Chief Executive of Defence Equipment and Support, the MOD’s procurement organisation, Tony Douglas added:
We have a long history of delivering complex warships in the UK and as a result of today’s announcement we will continue to develop a clear way forward for the Type 26 Global Combat Ship Programme that reflects the recent Strategic Defence and Security Review, in which the design is further matured while extending the engagement of the wider UK supply chain.
The Type 26 Global Combat Ship will be in service with the Royal Navy into the 2050s. The ship is being designed so it can be upgraded as new technology develops, so that it remains relevant and capable far into the future.