Defence Secretary Michael Fallon is to discuss an acceleration of delivery for the P-8 maritime patrol aircraft.

Asked whether the United Kingdom would be asking the Pentagon to provide some form of stopgap measure until the P-8s are available in order to deal with an influx of Russian submarine activity in Europe, Fallon said that will be an issue brought up during his Friday meeting with US Defense Secretary Ash Carter.

Fallon said:

“Yes there will be discussions, and I hope they will be this afternoon, because we need it.”

Defense News report that the UK are looking at having two US Navy P-8s, with British crews, operate from the UK in order to bridge the gap between now and when the first P-8s enter service.

Fallon also called for greater industrial ties between the US and UK.


  1. Would they also be repainted in RAF roundels and colours? Better then nothing I suppose, but it will look a bit embarrassing having an RAF aircrew flying over the UK, with a big fat US “NAVY” scheme down the sides of the aircraft, haha.

  2. And we were told the NImrod was an old design, how old again is the 737?

    Should’ve kept the Nimrods, great British engineering and one of the worst decisions ever made by a peace time govt, that and scrapping all the harriers.

    • Tell us this news 13 years ago it wouldn’t cause a fuss. Retire the the MR2 it’s an old airframe with limited future development. But to spend years on MRA4 so close to rolling it out and then cancel it, black hole or not we have been left with a capability gap P-8 a good platform but still not deliverable until 2020? So 10 years with no fixed wing maritime patrol aircraft. #SDSR

    • It WASNT close to rolling it out though. Nobody knew how much more money it was going to take and how long it would be before it could fly. The crime was how long it was allowed to go on for. It’s sad to say, UK doesn’t always do best when it comes to the military. We’ve had our successes but we’ve also had our failures. Just look at the Chinook fiasco. Tried to do it our way, failed!

  3. who cares ?, we spot a Russian sub., then what, we sure as hell are not going to attack it. Just fly over it in an old twin & bomb it with red dye.

  4. Of course the P8 aircraft will have RAF markings if and when they are leased, just as the initially leased four C17 transports had RAF markings before they were purchased outright.Not an issue.

  5. Does the US have enough to spare, I thought they only currently had around 30 of them.

    The US focus is not on Russia anymore, its on China and so leasing us the planes doesn’t help them with their priorities like it did when Russia was it.

  6. Good idea to lease a couple of P-8 aircraft until the first UK P-8 ones arrive and they should be re-painted with UK markings.

    As I understand it the problem with the Nimrod MR4 was that it was a political decision to keep putting money into a project, based on a old airliner design and therefore costing a lot of money, and not a military one. It appears that each aircraft required to have custom-made wings plus one of the decisions of the MOD was that it had to be modified to carry a type of missile that required the undercarriages to be higher than originally planned. There seems that back in those days that there was no policy of freezing a project and letting the manufacturer get on with producing the product. Thank goodness that the new-look MOD has woken-up to what the real commercial world requires is a period of stability in order to deliver each batch on time and on price.

  7. In retrospect, while rebuilding the Nimrod was selected as a cost saving measure by the Major government it would have been cheaper and far more useful to develop a brand new purpose built airframe. The decision to proceed with a rebuilt Nimrod was a perfect example of the UK’s post-cold war penny wise pound foolish procurement strategy.

    • A ” brand new purpose built airframe” for a requirement of under ten planes? Can you be quite serious? Even the US didn’t do that.

      • So an A320 airframe off the Hamburg production line, fitted with adapted wings (which happen to be made in the UK anyway) and then filled with all sorts of our evil black boxes back here at BAE wouldn’t be affordable then?

  8. Looks like the Great British Public have a Nimrod Derangement Syndrome (NDS) to go along with their Harrier Derangement Syndrome (HDS).

  9. Does any know if It gets the magnetic anaomoly detector fitted, I read where it operated at higher altitudes than Nimrod and would not work, But I also read where the Indian version have one fitted. the vanilla USN ones don’t


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