News story

UK business buoyed by £5 million Royal Navy refit

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

A Plymouth-based company has been awarded a £5 million contract to overhaul the interiors of all the Royal Navy's ships and submarines.

The investment by the Ministry of Defence (MOD) to refurbish chairs, mattress covers, bed linen and curtains across the fleet will secure more than 200 jobs at Lang & Potter.

New materials and colours schemes will be used to improve recreational and living areas for crews, who can be at sea for up to 180 days at a time.

Junior rates' sleeping quarters
Junior rates' sleeping quarters onboard Type 45 destroyer HMS Daring (library image) [Picture: Petty Officer (Photographer) Amanda Reynolds, Crown copyright]

The MOD’s Chief of Materiel (Fleet), Vice Admiral Simon Lister, said:

It’s easy to underestimate the importance of the living conditions at sea. The quality of the ship’s furnishings is important to keep crews safe and comfortable whilst deployed around the world.

Supporting this British small business will create more jobs, and keep morale high both in Plymouth and at sea.

Upholsterers at work
Upholsterers at work in Lang & Potter's Plymouth workshop (stock image) [Picture: Copyright Lang & Potter]

Lang & Potter will provide new soft furnishings to the Royal Navy over the next 4 years. The contract will enable them to recruit and train new staff adding to a team of over 200.

David Potter, Managing Director at Lang & Potter, said:

We are extremely pleased to have won this contract to deliver highly specialised textiles that meet the Royal Navy’s stringent requirements whilst helping men and women at sea feel as much at home as possible. It’s a challenge we are very much looking forward to, and we hope to bring some innovative ideas that provide both value for money and improved practicalities.

Winning this contract will safeguard existing jobs at Lang and Potter and will enable us to recruit and train new staff.

Sailors watching TV in a junior rates' mess
Sailors watching TV in a junior rates' mess onboard HMS Illustrious (library image) [Picture: Leading Airman (Photographer) Gary Weatherston, Crown copyright]