A&P Defence say it has secured a programme of maintenance work and repair packages to old and new River Class Offshore Patrol Vessels in Falmouth, as part of an ongoing support contract with BAE Systems.

A&P Defence and BAE Systems have recently agreed a two-year extension to a framework agreement which will now conclude in 2021. This will expedite any potential future repair and maintenance contracts on batch one – HMS Tyne, HMS Mersey, HMS Severn, and the brand-new batch two River Class Vessels – HMS Forth, HMS Medway, HMS Trent, HMS Tamar and HMS Spey. A&P Falmouth project manage and deliver the mutually agreed scope of works.

According to a news release, for the batch one OPVs, HMS Tyne, has already departed from A&P Falmouth following a seven-week refit programme which included installing new lifeboat davits and a general programme of repairs. HMS Mersey, underwent a short alongside period of repair works at the end of November.

“The Batch Two vessel, HMS Forth sailed on its first deployment from Falmouth at the end of November following an upgrade package including modifications to the Bowman tactical communications system and other equipment. HMS Medway had similar upgrades and has sailed from Falmouth, before it leaves for its maiden deployment to the Caribbean early this year. A&P Falmouth is working closely with BAE Systems throughout the project, which is being overseen by Defence Equipment and Support – the MOD’s procurement organisation.” 

Gerald Pitts, Managing Director of A&P Defence said:

“A&P Defence draws upon A&P’s skilled workforce and far-reaching capabilities to deliver marine, fabrication services and Global Support to the MOD, Tier One supply chain and overseas navies. This latest framework agreement is recognition of A&P Falmouth’s knowledge and expertise of the River Class and we look forward to continuing our work with BAE Systems to deliver any future contracts.”

Steve Jones, Managing Director of A&P Falmouth said:

“This agreement is the result of a longstanding and proven relationship between ourselves, BAE Systems and the Ministry of Defence and our commitment to delivering on time and to budget, every time. Over the last few years A&P Falmouth has built an unrivalled and in-depth knowledge of the River Class OPVs which enables us to offer greater insights, programme efficiencies and added value to BAE Systems. We are delighted to welcome all four vessels back into Falmouth.”

Bill Page, Head of Contracts for Availability, BAE Systems Maritime Services, said:

“We are proud to support the Royal Navy’s fleet of Offshore Patrol Vessels.  Our relationship with A&P Falmouth and its dedicated division is built on a strong track record and excellent communication. A&P Falmouth delivered the reactivation refit of the Batch one River-Class Offshore Patrol Vessel, HMS Severn, as part of the same support contract with BAE Systems in 2019.”

A&P say it has delivered more than 200 refits, maintenance periods and conversions for the governments of the United Kingdom, Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil and Lithuania.

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Geoffrey Roach

Excellent news for a good Cornish shipyard and everyone on the Fal.

Chris Finney

Indeed, a shame about Appledore though, I suppose there wasn’t enough of this type of work to go round.
Does anyone know is the Appledore site totally going or will they keep some of it open just to do fabrication work and the like?


Hi Chris,

Not sure what the latest news is but this Guardian Newspaper report suggests the Appledore yard is about to reopen under new management.


If true, it would please a lot of us on here…


Maybe like almost all the other shipyards and boatyards in the south it will be turned into luxury flats for a quick buck? Hope not though because its bad for the locals and bad for manufacturing and exports, let alone the RN.


So what’s the craic with the batch 1 Rivers? Are we keeping all of Severn, Mersey and Tyne?


It would seem so. Seeing as they’re all less than 20 years old, they’ve got a lot of service left to give. Especially as the newer OPVs will take a lot of the strain and allow a less vigorous operating cycle

James Fennell

The plan is to forward base them on erm, the Severn, Mersey and Tyne. One at Cardiff, one at Liverpool and one at Newcastle, to beef up fishery protection and border security post Brexit. https://www.savetheroyalnavy.org/amongst-a-series-of-good-news-stories-royal-navy-ship-numbers-to-be-increased/



Andy P

An interesting article James, if there’s only 3 of them you’d have thought Cardiff and Liverpool are pretty close together and could have been covered by one. Hey ho, more platforms is no bad thing.