The UK has sold military vessels to Egypt for the first time in more than 30 years.

Royal Fleet Auxiliary stores ships RFA Fort Austin and RFA Fort Rosalie will sail to Egypt after refurbishment work.

The Ministry of Defence say that during their service, Fort Austin and Fort Rosalie helped to ensure armed forces personnel all over the world had the food, ammunition and explosives they need to carry out vital operations.

Both Royal Navy Solid Support Ships were released from service earlier this year. Their new lease of life could also support UK jobs, with negotiations under way for refurbishment work on the vessels before they are exported.

Defence Procurement Minister Jeremy Quin was quoted as saying:

“Fort Austin and Fort Rosalie played an important role in sustaining our naval fleet for decades and I thank all involved in their essential work. Both the UK and Egyptian navies continue to strengthen relations to maintain peace and security in the region. As we nod to the past service of these ships, we can also look forward to the exciting future of welcoming our new Fleet Solid Support ships.”

Clive Walker, the Head of DESA, part of the MOD’s procurement arm Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S), said:

“DESA is exceptionally happy to be working with the Egyptian Navy on the regeneration of two former Royal Fleet Auxiliary ships. This represents a tangible demonstration of the strengthening relationship between the two navies and the importance of the strategic relationship between the UK and Egypt.”

Vice Admiral Chris Gardner, DE&S Director General Ships, said:

“Fort Austin and Fort Rosalie have both served the Royal Fleet Auxiliary, Royal Navy and many of our allies with distinction, across the globe both at peacetime and during conflict. Their sale to the Egyptian Navy – the first sale of UK military vessels to this partner in more than 30 years – represents both an investment in a UK partner nation and an opportunity to continue supporting our industry partners who will prepare these vessels to hand over, which is central to the successful National Shipbuilding Strategy.”

Fort Austin and Fort Rosalie will be replaced by the Fleet Solid Support (FSS) ships. At the end of August, four consortia successful at the pre-qualifying stage for the FSS build were awarded Competitive Procurement Phase contracts to enable designs to be matured.

The consortia are Larsen & Toubro, which includes UK company Leidos Innovations; Serco/Damen, which includes UK company Serco; Team Resolute, which includes UK companies Harland & Wolff and BMT; and Team UK, which includes UK companies Babcock and BAE Systems.

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Gareth
Gareth
1 month ago

Given that Fort Victoria is our only solid fleet support ship right now wouldn’t it be better to refurb and hold onto at least one of these until the new FSS are available. Would still create the jobs and generate sale money (or sail money) once the FSS’s are operational.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  Gareth

Hi Gareth,

I guess we all hoped that would be the case but hey ho we are where we are.

Now all we can do is hope that the FSS ships come forward on time and to spec…

Cheers CR

BB85
BB85
1 month ago
Reply to  Gareth

It is cheaper to rely on our friends for their solid fleet support ships. The problem is what happens when every nations adopts the same attitude.

Johan
Johan
1 month ago
Reply to  Gareth

Apparently, the issue is POWER SUPPLY, much like Ocean and the 1st 2 types 23s their power supply is maxed out, and cannot be linked to the modern navy. and would require huge amounts of work. so navy has pulled the bolt.

Paul42
Paul42
1 month ago
Reply to  Gareth

That would seem logical, but of course we don’t do logical…..

Bulkhead
Bulkhead
1 month ago

I thought Rosalie was in very bad condition

KD
KD
1 month ago
Reply to  Bulkhead

I go past both of them every day, from the outside they don’t look to bad

Sceptical Richard
Sceptical Richard
1 month ago

Egypt’s gain, Britain’s loss. Yet another capability being retired before it’s replacement has even been contracted for.

Crabfat
Crabfat
1 month ago

Don’t be sceptical, Richard (pun intended) we’re just keeping up with established practice and tradition! We’re proud of our capability gaps. Our military wouldn’t be the same without them!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago

This news demonstrates the standards of our armed forces and again shows that reading of mere numbers can be deceptive, if so many nations around the world can happily use clapped out assets. “But look…..Egypt has MORE replenishment ships than us!!” cries. Having said all that, leaves yet another gap and watch out for the spin from HMG and MoD when the FSS ships are building “for an expanding RN.” All they will be doing is replacing lost assets. They may well be far more capable, but will probably only be 2, though we all hope for 3. So the… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

Very true. Although in this case it’s not so much a gap ( we have one left) more a glaring risk of capability failure due to a lack of capacity and redundancy.

Thats not to say it’s not a glaring large risk, as any ship can break down at any time and that can be a catastrophic breakdown.

I personally think any sane manager of risk would have delayed to sale of one of these, given it a refit just to keep it sea worthy until the first of the new ships was in sight being ready.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Yes, I used a poor word there.

If it is a gap it is in the old stuff being replaced by new, which repeats itself all the time with MoD, rather than a capability gap.

John Stevens
John Stevens
1 month ago

I guess by the 2030’s – The Royal Navy will be more powerful compared to it’s current potency. Less overall ships, but at the same time more powerful ships. Two carriers with more F35’s, all 7 Astute sub’s in service, early to mid 2030’s – up to 24 Destroyers and Frigates. Destroyers with 72 AD missiles on board and so on.. More unmanned kit included.

Simon m
Simon m
1 month ago
Reply to  John Stevens

If that happens there are possibly several SDRs & governments between now and then easy to promise things you aren’t ultimately responsible for delivering whilst quietly scrapping capability in the name of modernisation. I hope I am wrong but despite the investment actually look what capability is going out the window… E3D, T23s, C130, WCSP, Sentinel, hovercraft etc. Fingers crossed the future plans stay in place.

John Stevens
John Stevens
1 month ago
Reply to  Simon m

Yes, I understand what you’re saying for sure. Lot’s can happen over the next 10 to 15 years that’s for sure. I’m just hoping they can carry through with some of these plans.

Bob
Bob
1 month ago
Reply to  Simon m

ZH101 (E-3) flew again earlier this week. Anyone know if it was a pre-sale flight, COP26 related or….?

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  John Stevens

I’d be worried about the RN leaving itself short right now and over the next 2-3 years. Let’s hope the powers that be have things sorted. Hopefully the T31/32s and upgraded T45s happens on time if not sooner plus the carriers get additional defensive armament soon. Would like to see another Astute on the order books too.

John Stevens
John Stevens
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

Yes, let’s hope so.. So important they build the extra type 31/ 32’s. Still slightly curios to how the unmanned Mine counter measure set’s will work out, will they end up being controlled solely from the type 32’s or from a mixture of different vessels depending on the situation.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  John Stevens

If the T32 is going to be more MCM orientated then how much of it will be a frigate and be able to do ASuW, AShW
LA all at the same time? If it’s going to have such a pivotal role in the RN why isn’t being ordered in a bigger quantity, even 1-2-3 more?

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  John Stevens

I am not sure that is true, in my view, by the 2030 the navy will be less capable. How will we compare SSNs -> slight uplift due to better capability of Astute, but not a numbers gain Aircraft carriers -> no change Frigates -> No confirmation on t32, so we will have a capability reduction as t31 are less capable than the t23 they are replacing and have zero antisub capability, whilst the general purpose t23 have limited capability. Support -> Albion/argus will go out of service, with no replacement planned Aircraft -> helicopters same / f35 slight uplifght,… Read more »

John Stevens
John Stevens
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Type 26 will be a capability gain. But, it’s true we will have to wait and see what happens over the next 10 plus years.

Thanks for replying to my previous message..

James Fennell
James Fennell
1 month ago

I think 1SL made it clear after the IR that there would be a short-term decline in hull numbers but much higher availability to compnesate to enable recapitalisation. The cost of refitting one of these ships for 5 years more service would probably mean only two FSS ordered. Its the best decision in circumstances.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
1 month ago

Im sure Boris will present this as yet further foreign investment in British Industry and jobs and expansion of British influence abroad, a great success for Global Britain. Some might actually believe it too.

Phil Chadwick
Phil Chadwick
1 month ago

Daniele, it doesn’t really leave another gap, as these two ships have already been laid up for a number of years anyway and were never going to go to sea again as RFA vessels. I do think though that the procurement for the FSS has been shameful, as was the decision to scrap RFA Fort George.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Phil Chadwick

I agree: more the issue was getting rid of Fort George which **might** have been converted into something useful.

Around 2010 all the decisions were driven by Osbourne’s obsession of running a corner shop with a cash till.

These ships are very old and very very knackered as well as probably not complying, even vaguely, with any current MOD safety procedures.

Posse Comitatus
Posse Comitatus
1 month ago

I do wonder what use these ships will be put to by Egypt. I know that they operate a Mistral class carrier, but I don’t know if they have any expeditionary capability within their navy that will see them operating far into the Med, North Atlantic or Indian ocean.

Ryan Brewis
Ryan Brewis
1 month ago

I’m just wondering at the lackadaisical attitude to replacing the solid support ships. The Tide and Wave classes give us six fleet tankers, all of which can carry 8 TEU containers equalling about 10k cubic feet all up. Not really a match at all for Fort Vic but a top up or something? Makes me wonder if they’re seen as “enough” for now. After all, they can take on stores at various bases can’t they?
Not accusing anyone of anything of course. Just a thought.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Ryan Brewis

The problem is the munitions.

Fuel and water is sorted as we have plenty of good tankers.

Food can be improvised with VERTREP if needs be.

It is the bombs and missiles where handling procedures are, rightly, strict that are limited to only Vic.

Tim
Tim
1 month ago

Vic is a one stop shop for fuel and stores inc ammo. So could the Tides be certified for ammo?

Ryan Brewis
Ryan Brewis
1 month ago

And that’s my point about whether there’s some complacency. Fuel, food and water is covered well, it’s munitions resupply at sea where there’s an issue. Which makes me wonder if the ship’s magazine is viewed as sufficient for most operations QE will undertake. Any shortfall, well there’s bases that (probably) can resupply various weaponry etc.

Paul42
Paul42
1 month ago
Reply to  Ryan Brewis

We have 6 tankers at the moment but the MOD have been looking to sell one or both of the Waves to Brazil since 2018……perhaps Egypt might take one…..or both??

klonkie
klonkie
1 month ago

Hi D. I think 3 is quite possible. There will be a capability gap with RFA Argus retiring in 2024 . I recall seeing somewhere that helo training may be shared across these 3 vessel’s along with their re supply duties.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago

Would be interesting to know who is paying for the refurb. As it’s happening here, I am guessing we are, which probably means we are ‘selling’ them at a loss.

Pete
Pete
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Or mod has dodged liability for disposal can imagine these ships are full of nasties. Construction in 1975 probably means lots of asbestos tucked away as u as well as other chemical elements. Even if sale price matches refurbished cost mod still quids in probably.

Johan
Johan
1 month ago
Reply to  Pete

as if we would never lol

Farouk
Farouk
1 month ago

As I’ve said before, I’ve still can’t grasp this Governments penchant of robbing Peter to pay Paul method of replacing frontline equipment

We saw it with the Nimrod, Harrier, Carriers, add the glacial speed of replacing anything
SA80
Challenger
Warrior
new frigates
anti ship missile
JLTV ( Anybody know what the Bobby Moore is there)

Mind you they did ensure that all military bases received their Rainbow flags (Damn good quality at that) to host during Pride week dread to think what that cost. Just glad I’m a big fat hairy civy.

Last edited 1 month ago by Farouk
Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Farouk

Flags are cheap and words are free, yet people believe in them. That’s why politicians wrap themselves in flags and speak many words.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Farouk

The JLTV contract was canceled. Speculation is because Boris wants to buy domestic to reinforce brexit message, aka another procurement less in the waiting as policticans get in way of actually buying the right gear for the job.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Rubbish. There has never been a JLTV contract.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

Not sure, there was some form of agreement that was terminated. Probably just a letter of intention that would have been required to get the US gov to permit the export.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Incorrect and the US has already given formal permission for UK acquisition.

Last edited 1 month ago by Ron5
Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

Yes that is the point, I assume for the US to give permission, there needs to be an app by the manufacturer, which wouldn’t happen without a letter of intent to buy. There was a news release which I can’t find now from the gov which said the agreement has been cancelled, which indicates some form of agreement, hence why I suspect letter of intent.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

I think you may well be correct about a ‘letter of intent’, I vaguely remember reading something along those lines with a figure of some 2000+ vehicles mentioned as the buy.
Wasn’t aware that UK had pulled the letter so to speak, but it has gone silent on this subject!!

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

You are totally incorrect, just give up

Joe16
Joe16
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

So what was the arrangement then? I was pretty sure the Army made some kind of selection for it and move towards purchase?
Don’t get me wrong, I’d prefer a domestic product, so would be happy to hear that we can get out of the JLTV buy and into a home-grown one (as long as it’s well run- if that’s indeed possible for a land systems purchase…).

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Joe16

Yes, the MoD made the JLTV the preferred choice without holding a competition. Permission was requested and given by the US for a foreign arms purchase. Officially the UK is still negotiating the terms of an actual buy.

It is taking forever but that’s down to money, or rather the lack of it. Not an official change of mind though I’m sure Boris is not too happy about the vehicles being 100% manufactured in the States.

Last edited 1 month ago by Ron5
Joe16
Joe16
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

He’s not the only one, I’m sure. I am not a fan of everything he does, and sometimes I question how seriously he believes in aa strong manufacturing Britain as anything other than a nice idea (given the Conservatives’ historic attitude towards British industry). But on this I agree with him- even a slightly pared down Foxhound would be a preferable choice to me.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Joe16

Agreed

Sooty
Sooty
1 month ago
Reply to  Farouk

. . And Sentinel and Sentry etc . . . As they say, there are no votes in defence.

Johan
Johan
1 month ago
Reply to  Sooty

Sentinel and Sentry, which were at the end of their service lives, required a large investment to pro-long, R1 fleet airframes in such poor condition are being scrapped. E3s are obsolete in their capabilities as an F35 has more computer radar power, and only supported Air caps for aircraft with Tranche 1 level radars, IE Tranche 1 Typhoons, and Hawk T1s, pointless keeping based on what if, Both Airframes are a bigger loss to our EU and Nato Allies, Wedgetail could be obsolete before it enters service, hence the number trim. Australia is already looking to plan for its replacement

Paul42
Paul42
1 month ago
Reply to  Johan

Wedgetail is a very long way from being obsolete which is why the US is now actively looking at it as a replacement for their E3s….

Johan
Johan
1 month ago
Reply to  Farouk

only responding to what i can confirm, MRA4 didn’t work after BAEs had spent the budget on airframes it proposed. in this pissing contest for more money UKgovs V BAEs, it got very messy, And lots of stuff got hurled around, 1/Harrier fleet had their airframe hours stripped. Invincible Class had their gearbox manufacturer support removed. And in an act of spite UKGovs canceled the MRA4 Program and Scrapped their Airframes to stop BAEs holding airframe certification and future maintenance of the fleet. Why only SHar 2s have airtime hours, Invincible Class was running out of gearbox hours and spares,… Read more »

Alan Reid
Alan Reid
1 month ago
Reply to  Johan

Johan I don’t believe there was a conspiracy, or act of spite, against BAE by the UK government in respect of the Nimrod MRA4 cancellation. That gives the UK government too much credit that there was any thought or serious rationale behind the decision! BAE’s bungled programme management certainly resulted in delays and cost overruns. And finally, during mid-2010, obtaining approval into service by the new Military Aviation Authority (MAA) was proving a lengthy process. That delay at MAA coincided with a new inexperienced coalition government bullish to prove its credentials in dealing with the UK’s budget deficit. Under pressure… Read more »

Dern
Dern
1 month ago
Reply to  Farouk

Why should the L85 be replaced? It’s a serviceable IW, a little on the heavy side, but still nothing on the market represents a capability increase over it that would be worth the investment.

Peter tattersll
Peter tattersll
1 month ago

What s the problem selling off and rusty old tub.

Chris
Chris
1 month ago

We haven’t even ordered the replacement ‘tub’ yet…

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  Chris

Maybe monies from these old tubs and can help pay for something new for the RN.

Alex Thomson
Alex Thomson
1 month ago

None they have been rusting away out of service for years

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

Exactly.
The supposed ‘capability gap’ here is not that we no-longer 2 clapped out useless vessels cluttering the quayside. If we can get some money for them then “hurrah” for HMG.

The capability gap is the fact the new FSS aren’t ready yet.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago

It is the problem with having reserve fleet.

You end up with expensive to decommission ships.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago

Doesnt say how much they are selling these highly specialised purpose built vessels for. So Im guessing we are selling them at a loss. Eg refurbishing them and giving them away to Egypt all at UK taxpayers expense. We are the charitable donators for the whole world whilst allowing our own armed forces and vested interest in our defence of the realm capabilities whither and die.
Really peeved off. Agree with other comments, it wouldn’t be so bad if the MARRS ships were actually under construction and imminently arriving.

GlynH
GlynH
1 month ago

I’m not sorry to see them go; would have preferred them going sooner had we kept Fort George. Then we might have had too more modern (& QE compatible) FSS that would have greatly reduced the spof.

Ross McFarlane
Ross McFarlane
1 month ago

At the risk of upsetting learned commentators, the reality is that all the Fort named ships, including Fort Victoria, are well past their sell-by date and any talk of refurbishment or modification for RFA use would be a waste of MoD budget. It was a struggle to get Fort Victoria fit to supply the QE class. Whilst Solid Stores Support ships are a great resource, and one which we should regenerate as soon as possible, it’s not a show stopper. Technology has moved on and the need to take everything with you by sea is less important. We have places… Read more »

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Ross McFarlane

The question is whether past its sell by date is still better than no capability or not. With only one vessle, the odds of it breaking down/ being unavailable when needed are not great, especially considering its age.

Ross McFarlane
Ross McFarlane
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Yes, and the Fort Austin ‘fridge’ fire prior to CSG21 was a reminder of this. I think you have to balance the potential liabilities of taking a decrepit, slow asset around the world versus the benefits that it provides. Following completion of CSG21, I would think the RN are more relaxed about future CSG deployments without Fort Austin.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Ross McFarlane

That was a flag flying exercise and not a miltiary deployment. In the event of an actual deployment, we need to be able to get ammo and other storage to the carrier to maintain whatever action it’s carrying out, over weeks or months periods.

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Ross McFarlane

The fridge fire was on Fort Victoria, not Austin.

Challenger
Challenger
1 month ago

I think the issue with keeping them in UK service to supplement Fort Vic wasn’t so much the feasibility but rather our unwillingness to stump up the cash for extensive refits and their larger crew requirements. Seems Egypt is willing to pay for spares and modifications as well as provide the necessary manpower to run them. At least Cammell Laird will get the refit work and the vessels will live on rather than being scrapped. Fort Vic will have to soldier on as a single point of failure due to the glacial pace of FSS and I suppose we will… Read more »

Andrew
Andrew
1 month ago

Did I read somewhere that Fort Austin/Rosalie were incompatible with replenishing the Queen Elizabeth?

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew

That’s true. Even Fort Victoria couldn’t replenish the carriers until she had received a dedicated refit package. To make it worse, Austin/Rosalie can’t operate Merlin, ruling out using their own hangar facilities for vertrep.

The Tides and future support ships have been designed with carrier replenishment in mind. The rigs line up with the dedicated RAS points on the carriers, meaning that they can quickly replenish the carrier while also RASing escorts with their remaining rigs. It’s complete madness how we haven’t pushed for the building of the new vessels.

Ron
Ron
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Well said, although the Forts are not able to replenish the carriers I think they could have replenished other vessels such as the T45/23 and also replenish Fort Vic which could then stay on station. We are really in need of the FSS ships as quickly as possible, full operation of Carrier Strike is meant to be 2023, without support ships that will be difficult. I for one like the idea of having large fast support ships operating with task groups, possibly even along the lines that Fort Vic/George was concevied to operate with a ASW or surface action group… Read more »

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron

I’ll drop in and say that the Tides have three smaller variants if you want to factor that into your plans. 😉

Ron
Ron
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Yeep they do and yes I did think about them. The only reason that I picked on the MRSS is cost and flexibility. If I remember and I’m now working from the top of my head, the Norwegians have HNOMS Maud which is a good liquid supply ship and a smaller varient of the Tide class. However, it comes again to cost and flexibility, AEGIR-26 type vessels are military tankers. The Uk does not have the money for a dedicated secondery tanker. I wish we had but we don’t. So I am trying to find a way to supply the… Read more »

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron

Oh trust me, I ‘get’ what you’re after. Don’t speak too loudly of it – such an asset is ripe for privatisation! 😂 It’s Pacman that’s after the KD ships. Like you, I personally prefer the Ellida concept as I feel they’ll add replenishment mass and serve as a good replacement for the Bays and Argus. That’s not to say KD couldn’t, but I prefer Ellida. Although Ellida can carry four Merlin as standard(!), it can be reconfigured as per customer requests, meaning that you could have one with a larger hangar and medical facilities, for example. Their spec also… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Lusty
Ron
Ron
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Thanks Lusty, I wondered if I was a bit potty with my thinking. There is a few other things that I like with the Ellida type ship, she has a well deck. With four Merlins and two or three LCVPs or my prefrence for the future is the CB-90. With the combination of Merlin and landing craft 120 Royal Marines plus kit can be landed ashore in a single lift. If going in light 250 Marines can get ashore. She has the size and with some thinking to act as a mothership for ROVs, UUVs etc. She can be a… Read more »

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron

Yourself and Lusty are on the mark I think with your thoughts on Ellida. With a well deck, a generous landing pad and hangar space for 4 helos, with a bit of imagination you can see how size and fit out variants on the Ellida design could replace Argus, the LPDs, LSDs, LHDs and FSS. And if the RN looking at Absalon rumour is correct, a 130m variant could even be your T32.

James Fennell
James Fennell
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron

Although the CB-90 looks very cool, the USMC found them a bit fragile, difficult to maintain and with low availability rates in autere environments – too complex for a fairly simple task. Also while the enclosed cabin is good for the cold baltic winter, it reduces situational awareness and ease of entry and egress for troops. The all British ORC in RM service is fairly new and addresses these issues.

orc-mcv.jpg
Frank62
Frank62
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron

HNOMS Maud has been alongside next to the POW in Portsmouth naval base this last week.

barry white
barry white
1 month ago

People think for a moment
These ships are over 40 yo
I know as i joined the Fort Grange (i refuse to call it Fort Rosalie)
I know as i joined her in the builders yard and stayed on her for the first two years of her life
This was in the days when the RFA was a good outfit to be in

klonkie
klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  barry white

Good point Barry. Theses vessel surely represent good taxpayer value.

Cripes
Cripes
1 month ago

It seems a daft decision to sell off the older Forts years before the FSSS replacements even start construction. It leaves one replenishment ship to support the CSG, the rest of the fleet and 8 or more overseas garrisons or commitments for the 5-6-7 years until the first FSSS enters service. ‘Global Britain’ is looking rather hollow. It is lactually less a daft decision than a bleeding great financial necessity. The Navy’s equipment budget for surface ships is £1.95 bn a year, of which probably less than half is available for platforms. With 59 surface vessels a year ago, the… Read more »

David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  Cripes

Dreadnoughts and Nuclear deterrent in general are coming from whole MoD budget not RN’s.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

That makes no practical difference. It doesn’t matter if it is called MoD budget or RN budget or Mary Poppins budget. Cripes’ point is all defence-related spending adds up to a nearly fixed total of about 2.1% of GDP; money spent on one defence budget isn’t being spent on any other.

Andrew
Andrew
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Didn’t the nuclear deterrent expenditure come direct from the treasury previously? That left the the 2% odd defence budget for non Nuclear expenditure?

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew

It’s complicated and my understanding is limited. First the question of whose budget. I have tried reading the MoD accounts and the Treasury’s departmental accounts, but trying to get a basic breakdown of how it works is beyond me. I’m not the only one. Let me quote from a House of Common briefing paper In 2007 a disagreement erupted between the MOD and the Treasury over the funding of the capital costs of the replacement programme. The MOD suggested that the capital costs of procuring the nuclear deterrent had, in the past, been borne by the Treasury, a position which… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Jon
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  Cripes

Apologies I need to read slower.

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago

I had my first taste of the RFA on-board Fort Rosalie alongside in Salalah back in early 2002 to help out with some upper deck sentry duties. The guy on the gangway had the biggest beer belly i had ever seen, with his 8’s shirt proudly unbuttoned showing it off in all its glory. He looked the part with his SA80 slung over one shoulder with his jail house tats 😄 Then the captain rocked up, with one white sock pulled up, and the other rolled down, and a baked bean stain on his shirt 😂. I’m sure they look… Read more »

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Sounds about right! 😂

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Oh happy day’s 😄

Tom Keane
Tom Keane
1 month ago

Same ol same old it has to be said. Bean counters most likely from the treasury office, making decisions with no interest let alone any knowledge of the MOD, let alone its ‘kit’ requirements. Same old tories it has to be said. Shocking!!

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Tom Keane

These vessels have been out of service for some years now, and would cost a fortune to get them back into service with the RFA. So the money saved goes towards new kit. Sometimes the old kit is just a drain on resources.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

The MOD should have kept fort George, she was less than 20 years old when stripped and sold. Even now she would only 28, which is old but OK.

I also wonder what Egypt’s plans are around it’s navy, as it will have a reasonable number of dry stores ships but no Oiler’s beyond coastal vessels.

simon
simon
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Yep, as been been pointed out here quite a few times one of the stupidest decisions in the last 15 years

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  simon

I’ll lump Largs Bay into that as well. Both of the older Forts should have been sold off ~12 years ago with George and Largs saved.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Yep considering how useful the Bays are for a lot of deployments and how cost effective they are it was grossly short sighted.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

I can’t believe we flogged that ship after 5 years in service, criminal waste of national resources.

Frank62
Frank62
1 month ago
Reply to  simon

Lots of competition for stupidest decisions in the last 15 years.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Bravo.

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago

Well we had to get rid of these two ships…I mean GLOBAL BRITAIN needs less ships. Same with F35-B which was instead of F35 for carriers with CATOBAR – Now the RAF is stuck with a jet not as good as a Typhoon. Of course PM had to keep up tradition, at start of the Falklands conflict under Mrs Thatcher our government was in the middle of selling HMS invincible to Australia. So defence spending is up and yet RN are two frigates down.. That’s called “expanding the fleet” So we get Type 31 with reduced weapons just like F35-B… Read more »

Fedaykin
1 month ago

There is so much wrong with this ill informed post that I can’t even be bothered to tear it to pieces.

My advice, step away from the keyboard if you don’t know what you are talking about.

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  Fedaykin

This site is full of posts like that. They really are not worth a reply.

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

So you are happy with a shrinking RN and HMS prince of Wales with no Jets.. Blair was the brainchild of the two carriers and there has been plenty of time to get both carriers jets,, I suppose you are happy with Ocean being sold to Brazil? My point is all governments have neglected the armed forces – Army stands at 82,000 and could shrink more, RN have 17 major warships not all available. UK can afford HI Speed rail links nobody needs, but investment is lacking in our armed forces. Could we really defend the Falklands? “Posts Like That”… Read more »

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago

And posts like that show you are living in the past, and don’t understand today’s capabilities. We are not re-fighting old wars. And carrier strike regeneration doesn’t happen overnight. We are spending 190Bn on new equipment. That’s not exactly a lack of investment.

David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Don’t worry you’ll never hear from again. I think there must be a cupboard somewhere where the monikers are kept.

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

There is  £16.5 billion extra funding to be spent on shipbuilding, Cyber Security and other projects. Shipbuilding after 6 Global Combat Ships which are state of the art, but SIX…… So Type 31 and 32 with less weapons than current frigates we have now…. If the government/MOD was to mothball some of the Type 23 Frigates, that would be more acceptable because no way will Type 31 and 32 be major warships. We are not fighting old wars YET – Who knows the future.. Falklands sure a night follows day will be attacked again. With Brexit we have to trade… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago

This should give you some idea of the actual defence spending in real terms. Hope the information is useful!

https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/cbp-8175/

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

And some good news on the F-35B front, we will be adding an additional three this year apparently and cheap to run by all accounts, $36,000 per hour! Only seven major category 1 deficiencies left to fix as of July 2021 Category 2 deficiencies: “Of the 850 minor issues, 165 are classified as “enhancements,” meaning they do not represent a deviation from the program’s requirements like most reported deficiencies. These features are typically seen as proposed future upgrades, Seal said.” It’s a pity they keep discovering more issues with the software but it’s going to be a real game-changer! The… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Over 500 F35s in service around the world. And counting. 13 countries operating the aircraft or on order, and counting. Need I say more. Oh, and a 7 month global deployment with 18 jets. Good job these countries Airforces and Navy’s know a hell of a lot more about the F35 than you do. Leave it to the experts Nigel.

julian1
julian1
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Nigel, 3 more deliveries this year – that is less than the plan I think, is this as a result of MoD slowing down to wait for block iv?

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

It was mentioned by Robert Blay on hear that we will receive three more? I think Ben Wallace has made the correct assessment, the US is adopting the same approach. LONDON — The high costs of supporting F-35s and a failure to quickly integrate the MBDA Meteor missile to the aircraft could slow British plans to buy more of the jets, defence secretary Ben Wallace warned June 23. Wallace told Britain’s Parliamentary defence select committee that he had the budget to buy more than the 48 jets the military has already ordered, but wanted to see progress controlling maintenance costs… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

And from the USA.

House lawmakers want to force the Pentagon to lower F-35 sustainment costs in order to buy more aircraft

https://www.defensenews.com/air/2021/09/02/house-lawmakers-want-to-force-the-pentagon-to-lower-f-35-sustainment-costs-in-order-to-buy-more-aircraft/

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

Found it!

Robert Blay.
 3 days ago
Reply to Nigel Collins

“3 more F35B’s heading to the UK today, fresh from the factory.👍”

https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/ukraine-uses-bayraktar-tb2-drone-in-combat-for-first-time/#comment-592540

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Is it any wonder why we are now slowing down our orders for more of the F-35’s? It’s looking to me like the writings on the wall? Best left to the people in the know rather than one or two of the fantasists with little or no knowledge of the true costs who are the first to say “but we don’t have the money in the defence budget Nigel when it suits” and the actual problems that exist even when it has been constantly pointed out to them by me over the past five years. WASHINGTON — Two influential Democrat… Read more »

wpid-img_16200757845058.jpeg
Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

What a mess, and note the weapons fit that requires Block 4 now due in 2026/7 and counting! “The U.K. government has disclosed for what appears to be the first time that it is not necessarily committed to eventually upgrading all 48 of the F-35B Joint Strike Fighters that it plans to buy with the still-in-development and increasingly costly Block 4 package. Jets without the updates would be left with more limited capabilities. This also raises questions about how existing and future F-35 operators might approach the same question. “Jones asked “whether the F-35 Block 4 upgrade is already (a)… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Same old comments from the same old anti F35 websites. so predictable Nigel. You talk about limited F35 capability without block 4, but argue we should keep capability limited tranche 1 Typhoons at great cost? 🤔 doesn’t really stack up does it. Not all Harrier GR7’s received GR9 upgrades, so nothing new on that front. And what difference is all that talk making? Over 500 F35’s in service and growing. if you read the sensible websites you will see costs are coming down, $30;000 per hour for 2023, Only 4k more than a F16. Not bad for a 5th gen… Read more »

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Evening Robert, your comment ref costs coming down and not being ‘bad’ for a 5th gen fighter is a truly poor one even for you! Yes, I know we have differing opinions on the F35s value, but, the info Nigel has posted whilst perhaps unpalatable is correct. The price per hour for operations is still way above what was quoted years ago, and it’s been like that for a decade or so. These faults if you like, are real and will impact on operations to a lesser or greater degree. The operating costs have forced UK PLC to cut flying… Read more »

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Morning. Recovering from a Halloween party. I have never disputed F35 delays, cost overruns or any of the problems with the project. But this is a truly enormous engineering undertaking. Will F35 ever be as affordable as a F16, probably not. But it’s capability is not comparable to a F16. And despite the cost overruns, and cost per flying hour ect, it’s not putting countries off from ordering the aircraft. Because they see the level of capability it brings. It’s at the very beginning of it’s development cycle, and will be upgraded at a pace not seen before. Block 4… Read more »

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Evening Robert, thanks for the reply, sharing the same sort of feeling after having been to a birthday bash – ooh not good! I think its fair to say that both you and I view the F35 in a glass half full/half empty sort of way, which is fine really. I wont disagree about aircraft programme costs in general, as with every new system, they all have issues/troubles that need ironing out – Ajax!!! I wont really disagree about its capabilities either, but it has flaws, some significant, hopefully they will be overcome. The issue with the F35 programme, is… Read more »

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Evening pal. Thanks for the reply, I’ll keep this one short. 😄 The loss of T1 Typhoon is a shame but I don’t think it will affect hours as much as people think. Aircraft holding QRA generally spend far more time sat in the QRA shed than in the air. And we use T2/3 aircraft for QRA today, seen a few carrying Meteor too on QRA launches. And I think the Typhoon upgrades coming are worth the sacrifice. In a perfect world the money would be available to do it all, but that’s a different matter. And less talked about… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

The U.S. Air Force Just Admitted The F-35 Stealth Fighter Has Failed
Yes, we’re talking about the F-35. The 25-ton stealth warplane has become the very problem it was supposed to solve. And now America needs a new fighter to solve that F-35 problem, officials said.

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

Ocean was built to commercial not naval standards. She was already past her expected life and was proving increasingly to keep in operation at the availability level the RN expects of its ships.

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

But she wan not replaced. we have no helicopter carrier.

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago

I hate to be ‘that’ guy, but if you’re angry now, you’re going to blow up if I tell you that under current plans, the Army will be reduced below the figure you quoted…

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Yep disgusting. I hate to say this, Blair was better than the sum total of Tory leaders on defence.. The new carriers was his brainchild, but larger. Disappointed in Boris and the clown Wallace…

https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/uk-army-to-be-reduced-to-72500/

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago

Really, Ernest! Shall I list the cuts from labour 1997 to 2010 for you!?
It won’t make happy reading.
Blair. Brown. Cameron. May. Johnson. Little difference in any of them by my eye regards kit numbers.

I think Wallace is doing Ok myself when compared to Gareth Ainsworth, Hutton, Des Brown, and Fallon.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago

Agreed mate.

My point was I view them all as bad.
The Army survived under Labour ( to a point ) because of ongoing Iraq and Afghan ops.

A quick re read of FAS Future Army Structures showed even then armour was getting whittled away.

19 Mech Bde became 19 Might. 4 Armoured became 4 Mechanized. 3 Armoured Regiments all lost a squadron, replaced by Scimitar. AS90s cut.

They’re all the same.

Dern
Dern
1 month ago

You couldn’t even get the number of Frigates to be built right… and you used a project name that hasn’t been in use for almost a decade at this point…

Seriously…

James
James
1 month ago

What part of having 2 carriers with 1 available at all times is so difficult to understand? We never intended to have 2 carriers with 2 full air wings as they are neither needed nor planned for.

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  James

Ok for most of the time but, a situation could arrise when both carriers would be needed. Dangerous world/

Frank62
Frank62
1 month ago
Reply to  James

The difference between an LPH & a massive dedicated carrier is that the LPH is far more expendable & can sit closer off shore to deployair/sea landing assets, having mnore amphibious assets, whereas a big carrier like out QEs are way too expensive & a criminal risk to do the same job except fromfar further out. So while a QE could do the job, it would be stupid militarily. That’s why you have LPHs. When the Treasury dictates military policy huge mistakes proliferate.

Dern
Dern
1 month ago

WHAT not ALL warships are available 100% of the time?
You mean like… *checks notes* EVERY NAVY IN HISTORY?
:O

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

Such an ill-informed fact-free post, it’s borders the hilarious if it weren’t for the fact you might actually believe what you’ve posted.
Up there with flat-Earth theory.

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Such a silly reply.

You don’t understand the MOD wastes money TSR2 NIMROD.

UK has a defence budget not much less than Russia , yet have less troops, far less battle tanks armour RUSSIA $61.6 USD.. UK $61.5 USD.

If you believe the UK are defended good enough against Russian threat, that’s dreaming….

Could we send a 50 ship task force to the Falklands like we did in 1982 – No is the short answer.

So UK are forward deploying. What with? If you don’t understand what I am on about, you obviously need some lateral thinking.

https://www.dailymaverick.co.za/article/2021-03-10-britain-overtakes-russian-military-spending-but-only-offers-nurses-1-pay-rise/

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

Make a stupid comment and get a silly reply 🤷‍♂️ The TSR2 was cancelled in the 1960’s for gods sake!! Are you still harping on about that. As for Nimrod, that was a political decision to continue developing that, and thankfully to finally kill off a ridiculous programme that could never have succeeded. Russia has land borders with NATO and China. We’re an island. Plus you counting pure numbers not quality – you sound like an accountant. We are defended against Russia. We’re members of the most powerful military alliance in history. We’d sink their ships, and down their aircraft… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

You know full well that TSR2 was just an example, followed by Nimrod – They cut the size of the carriers and dropped CATOBAR and bought not that great F-35B. In other words stealth over good weapon load and range. So we don’t need a 50 ship navy with Global Britain, guarding the trade routes as one example ? DO NOT compare me with <Insulate Britain> or ER!! “Lateral thinking” is the ability to think sideways or, outside the box. And gosh the MOD really need to do that.. Closest to Half decent DS was Gavin Williamson who had half… Read more »

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

TSR2 is ancient history – there’s nobody in Parliament or the MoD that was around when that decision was made. Scrapping the Nimrod black hole was the correct decision, according to everyone knowledgeable about the subject. The F35B has twice the range of the Harriers that served in ‘82 and has a range comparable with many existing CATOBAR aircraft. As you like referring to ‘82 if we’d had CATOBAR aircraft then rather than VSTOL then we may not have won. The sea state was too high for the Argentine carrier to large their aircraft – the same would have applied… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

I used TSR2 and 1982 as a benchmark. No matter the reasoning the UK military is two small, considering the large budget we have, almost as large as Russia. So what is it being spent on. Quality may matter but so done quantity,, We may have top notch in small numbers , but they can’t be everywhere at once, can they, You don’t need lateral thinking for that.. Also UK subs kept Argentine carrier in port, I would have though. The world has not changed that much as we do not need a larger fleet, larger army and probably larger… Read more »

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

It’s simple if you think about it… Go live it Moscow for a month and see how much it costs you compared to living in London. A dollar, or whatever your currency of choice is, buys far more in Russia than it does in the U.K. The same applies to military spending. You’d have a revolt on your hands if we tried to reduce the pay of U.K. servicemen down to that of Russian servicemen. No the U.K. sub was busy sinking Belgrano in the Argentine Navy’s Southern pincer movement. Their carrier was in the Northern pincer movement, and unable… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Not saying reduce pay, Our defence budget is large for a medium sized nation, not reflected by military assets, The F-35 no matter what is said, is not as good as a F-23C or A or Super Hornet. it’s like the Harriet, bulky being VSTOL. Really was a poor choice. I think you are wrong saying a CATABAR could have not have helped us win. For a start we would have had early warning, further range.. Example VSTOL – US bought them for marines, not the Navy. In the Falklands Harriers supported the troops well. example Goose green. Do you believe… Read more »

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

Well you’d have to reduce pay and buy cheaper, poorer weapon systems if you want the same quantity of arms and men as Russia. Or increase spending on defence – you could always lead by example and send a cheque to HMRC, they do accept voluntary donations. The F35B is the RNs choice, I think they know better than you on the subject. Its also the USMC, Italian Navy, Japanese Navy, Singapore, etc aircraft of choice. And unlike your F18, it can launch and land in high sea states, and isn’t rendered non-operational if the catapult breaks. The same sea… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

The Royal Navy took what they were given and made the best of it. They would rather have had a better jet than that….I do not want to match Russia gun for gun. Jet for Jet or Ship for Ship. Just a credible defence goal..

Say Frigates/Destroyers and Corvettes 50 – 150 jet – 100,000 land army. More tanks for UK DEFENCE…

To pay for reform MOD and cut all waste.

I am not a modernist at all, a realist who is a traditionalist. How can anyone not see how small our defences are,,,

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

Funny there was no complaints from the RN, they were happy with the B, as are all the other nations buying it. There has been grumbles from some in the RAF, but really that’s to do with having to share in a joint force. That’s inter-service politics. There’s no better VSTOL jet then the F35B, and the only better jet is the F35C and F22 – the latter being USA only. The RN doesn’t want corvettes. That’s why they’ve constantly jumped on suggestions the B2s are corvettes – which they are in other navies. As for these 50 ships, well… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

How do you know what the RN really wanted? To be honest i think they would rather have had nuclear power to propel the carrier. No missile defence on board the carrier. That being said would be fine with 4 F-35C on board rather than the chunky VSTOL which is more suited as ground support and dedicated marine ships. Super Hornets would have been better IMO. Corvettes for guarding home waters are fine IMO, in WW2 they did a job defending convoys.. They could do an anti submarine role, for UK waters not overseas adventures, Lets talk about 50 ships.… Read more »

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

Well none of the Royal Navy involved in the decisions have since complained – and that includes the ones who are retired and don’t have to worry about upsetting anyone. The F35B is superior to any aircraft the FAA had previously and certainly superior to anything other than the C type. Though it gains in being more versatile than the C. As for the F18, 4th Generation missile targets 🤷‍♂️ You want 10 of everything 🤦‍♂️ Though of course you completely forgot about the most lethal vessels in the RN, the SSNs. I’d rather have more Astute’s over any T23… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

The RN won’t and can’t complain. Who listens to them if they did. OPV are needed when frigates are to large or not suitable.. Example Cod war with Iceland, Frigates damaged ramming or being rammed. The MOD they sent tugs to battle with the Icelandic boats.. F-35B has VSTOL engines making them bulky and in a dogfight with Typhoon. F-35C they would lose. Rage is less as is weapon carrying capability. You mock 4th generation, well a well armed Super Hornet or a Typhoon is better than a VSTOL any day, We could have developed as super Harrier if we… Read more »

Sean
Sean
1 month ago

You clearly don’t read any newspapers, listen to radio, tv, news websites, etc. the media is more than happy to report on any former military officers criticising the government’s policy. (Guess that explains why you’re so out of touch too…) The RN never wanted the OPVs, fact. It was a work generation scheme to keep shipbuilding skills while there was a wait before the Type 26s began construction. The RNs mine-hunters and mine-sweepers have a secondary role as patrol craft, which is the RN didn’t want dedicated OPVs. But now that that these vessels will be replaced with autonomous systems… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

I do watch TV news and online newspapers. Your blind faith in F-35C is astonishing. You can have all the smart weapons you like, some jets would get through and F-35B would not be able to fight against lesser jet. You forget to carry a decent payloads of weapons, F-35B looses it’s stealth with missiles on pylons. RE Subs{ I am sure in an emergency Trafalgar class would be used.. But if you know better than I, then my first point from posts back allowed for new A diesel electric class to be built in numbers for HOME DEFENCE, Russia… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by ERNEST HARRISON
Sean
Sean
1 month ago

Bet you think we should strap maxim guns to our aircraft to dogfight enemy jets at supersonic speeds 😂 The F35B doesn’t need external pylons for a decent weapons load, it can carry a decent load internally. But once stealth is no-longer required because it’s wiped out all the enemy 4 Generation fighters, then it can carry an increased payload on pylons to become a bomb truck. It might be possible in an emergency to recommission the decommissioned Trafalgars, depending upon what stage in the process they are at and their condition. You might have to ask for volunteers to… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Just one point, You have faith we could never have a spat with France, or Spain. Anything can spark now or more important in the future, from the fishing disputes with France and Gibraltar, When the EU are really unified with an EU military they will IMO be no less a threat than Russia. As for the F-35B so good that they are not the Jet of choice for US Airforce or navy. We have to have them because of no CATABAR and the RAF have to share them. You may be right over Cruise Missiles but surely every delivery… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by ERNEST HARRISON
Sean
Sean
1 month ago

You really are as mad as a box of frogs aren’t you? So suppose France decides to launch a military attack on the U.K… we invoke Article 5 and France is now facing the might of NATO 😆 As for the EU. It’ll disintegrate in time, just like every other supranational political union has before it. The only question is whether it’ll implode from members wanting less centralisation or trying to leave, or whether if it goes to war with Russia. (So long as Russia doesn’t attack first, Article 5 can’t be invoked in this scenario, so the EU would… Read more »

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

You’re running the nation’s armed forces down with your fantasy fleets commentary. The MOD Black Hole is on all projects for new equipment, this covers everything from the the army’s disastrous Ajax programme, through to the T26 and T31 programmes. BAE have already said they couldn’t build any T45 as a follow-on now. It would be effectively setting up to build a new ship again. Yes the T31 are £250m each, but that is NOT counting items supplied by the RN as carryovers from the refurbished T23’s such as Sea Ceptor, etc, etc. There has been announcement yet as to… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

First the £31 Billion was a typo. I have poor eyes due to W To you last point, I suggested the T 31 could be split into air defence, ship to ship and anti sub. Type 31 are not designed to fight alone – The weapons would be the same. Tempest is in the distant future, government doing very little funding… https://ukdefencejournal.org.uk/tempest-jet-investment-significantly-less-than-required/ The Ajax programme was not my fault you know, a black hole is a black hole for whatever reason. Not the fist waste of money From The rockets at Woomera, TSR2, Nimrod, what happened for planned Challenger 3… Read more »

Dern
Dern
1 month ago

Conveniently forgetting that F-35B is the jet of choice for the US Marine Corps.
It’s almost like the F-35A was designed to Airforce requirements, the F-35C was designed to Navy Requirements and the F-35B was designed to Marine Corps requirements, but that would be craaazy.

simon
simon
1 month ago

I don’t think the US has diesel electric submarines. It is one of the reasons Taiwan are struggling to obtain new subs

Dern
Dern
1 month ago

Btw, a ship that can only be used for “Home Defence” in the UK’s global situation is a waste of money.

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Defence spending increases in part to plug a “black hole£ on MOD spending. Defence sources acknowledged that the air force cuts would reduce logistics and supply capacity at a time when ministers want British forces to be more “forward deployed” in both Africa and the Indo-Pacific.” “A string of ageing RAF planes will be retired in the next couple of years, including 24 first-generation Typhoon bombers, as well as nine chinook helicopters, 14 Hercules transporter aircraft and 20 Puma support helicopters. Defence sources acknowledged that the air force cuts would reduce logistics and supply capacity at a time when ministers want… Read more »

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago

Regarding the Cod war. The RN sent Leanders and other such frigates which weighed in at around 2500t each…Nowadays A batch 2 River weighs in at around 2000t.

julian1
julian1
1 month ago

HS 2 is not about speed its about capacity. We need to get far more freight on the railways for all kinds of reasons and HS2 could allow us to do that by increasing capacity

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

Connecting the South and Midlands would leave a huge gap onwards to Scotland.

I would have though improving existing networks would have been better, Some routes just 10 miles in Lancashire, Merseyside would take hours if used because of multiple changes,,

Julian1
Julian1
1 month ago

That could be done too but at the end of the day we need extra north-south, as well as trans pennine capacity. Travel on the M1/M6 and probably countless other routes and you’ll see why. Compounded with lack of lorry drivers, damage to roads and fossil fuels and new electric railways which free up space on legacy railways for freight. People who just consider the speed have totally missed the point.

Dern
Dern
1 month ago

“Catapult Assisted Take-Off But Arrested Recovery” CATOBAR, not “CATABAR” And… lol you think having 1 CATOBAR and 1 STOVL carrier is a good idea. A costly “upgrade” that would require a completely seperate fleet of aircraft that wouldn’t be interchangable. And yes we had Corvettes in WW2… but guess what that was a different naming convention. What was called a Corvette in the early days of world war 2 was an Ocean Going Anti-Submarine escort (as distinct from a destroyer which, contrary to popular belief was an escort optimised for anti-surface warfare). As time went on the term “Frigate” replaced… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Dern
ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Dern

I stand corrected on my spelling. I have a sight condition “WMV” and am prone to the odd mistake. So to the posts. Corvettes in WW2 – Britain had near 300 Flower class almost dedicated to escorting convoys – Detecting and peppering U Boats with depth charges, Small boats with a huge impact. It would IMO IMO be a good option and cheap considering our lack of number of Destroyers and Frigates, They could be used for guarding the British coastline armed with some missiles. I know we have River Class OPV , but they have a limited role..- Russia… Read more »

Dern
Dern
1 month ago

Wow, did you just really reply to a post pointing out that a WW2 Corvette and a modern Corvette are not the same thing with “yeah but we had Flower Class corvettes in WW2.” Let me make it clear: A ship with a Flower Class mission set today would be called a Frigate, not a Corvette. They are not the same thing. Again you do not need ships that can only guard the British Coast, even the B1 Rivers are capable of Blue Water operations (and have been used in that role in the past). You’ve managed to clock that… Read more »

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Dern

Let me make it clear, Flower class was a Corvette and not comparable to the Duke Class at all.. Who knows about the Type 31. You need lots to guard a coastline – Russia has over 80 Corvettes, are we different? if Type 26 are deployed and with onl8 8 and out of those some will be in dry dock for various reasons. same with the Type 45, just 1 available for the CSG when one broke down again. We don’t get all 48 F-35B until 2025 and that is without delays.. Come on look at the history. We could… Read more »

Dern
Dern
1 month ago

Well considering that you’ve shown repededly that you don’t have a clue what you’re talking about how about you don’t try to lecture about Flowers vs Dukes. Surprisingly yes, ASW work has evolved since the 1940’s. However today, if you wanted a ship with the same mission set as a Flower Class corvette: It would be a frigate. As I pointed out, and as you can’t seem to grasp: In WW2 Corvettes where ASW specialists, and later, as they became larger the designation “Frigate” was preferred. I’m sorry you can’t grasp this very simple concept. As I said, and I… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Dern
ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Dern

Oh dear now I know you are loopy…I am a paid up member of the Tory Party. That does not mean I am a slave to all thier policies. Oh for goodness sake stop comparing WW2 Corvettes with Frigates. Yes Frigates can do the same job but higher cost. Think out of the box – We can’t afford more top of the range frigates so we would be better with Corvettes with missile capability and anti sub capability – Don’t say that can’t be done, after all a bouncing bomb help turn the tide of WW2. If we have to… Read more »

Dern
Dern
1 month ago

Reading comprehension is not your thing is it?
Sorry I can’t help you if you’re too stupid to understand a fairly basic point:
Modern frigates are the evolution of WW2 corvettes. Think of it like Pokemon since that seems to be your level.

It can be done… it just would be pointless because the RN needs ocean going escorts not coastal vessels, but we’ve been over this. Which is the point I made multiple posts ago, again, you can’t seem to grasp this.

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  Dern

And you say I am stupid.. Modern Frigates are the evolution of WW2 Corvettes.. So what? Nothing to do with what I am saying. A Modern Corvette would help do the job defending the UK, simple as that really. large Frigate may be better, but Type 26 just 8 is it being built, they can’t be everywhere. Can they. Type 31 if built in numbers would also be good, but not that many of those being built….8 type26 Frigates 6 type 45 Destroyers is 14 major escorts, That means SIX type 31 to make 20 ships, NOT ENOUGH So build… Read more »

julian1
julian1
1 month ago

actually, Super Edendard had buddy-buddy refuelling

ERNEST HARRISON
ERNEST HARRISON
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

You mean Argentina could do that with no help?? I wonder….

Julian1
Julian1
1 month ago

Argentina managed to get Exocet working on SE without any support from french engineers! Quite resourceful especially as the manuals were all in french

Frank
Frank
1 month ago

Also did I read somewhere on DESA that RFA Argus and HMS Scott are also for sale? Does anyone know if there are replacements for these assets?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank

MROSS for Scott. For Argus, 1SL outlined options ranging from keeping Argus going to a Containerised floating FH on another vessel.

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago

Falklands Vets, the pair of them. The underside of the Captain’s Conference Room table on Austin was defaced with the words “If I can’t see the Argies, they can’t see me!”. Clearly, someone had used it as a shelter during an air raid in ’82. I hear the table is now at the FAA museum and I hope it will be joined by other artefacts from the ships in the coming months.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

So, I get to read this after all. I did not know this history.

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago

Good old HMG get rid before we get new or at all 🙄

Watcherzero
Watcherzero
1 month ago

Been reported Greece is interested in buying all 30 of the RAF’s Tranche 1 Eurofighters as they have about 50% of their serviceable life left. For Greece their limited ground attack capability is offset by the need for an interceptor. Last month they increased their purchase of second hand Rafales by 6 taking their order from France this year to 18 second hand and 6 new build. Greece is in a local arms race against Turkey as they both rush to quickly expand their military forces.

Last edited 1 month ago by Watcherzero
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  Watcherzero

Don’t tell Macron he had to promise to go to war with Turkey to sell Greece those planes. The way he’s going he might have a psychotic break if they do buy from us. Assuming he hasn’t already !

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Watcherzero

Not good news placing more airframe hours on the rest of the fleet for air intercepts.

https://www.aerotime.aero/29315-greece-considers-raf-eurofighter-typhoons

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

The rumored sale is of RAF jets that have been taken out of service.

More of your usual anti-UK & US propaganda. Like your F-35 drivel above.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

Most of which seems to be coming from your top brass and politicians Ron 5. Like the other clown on here who follows me around like a puppy with childish replies to the stated facts, try educating yourself before posting. Hows is the fix going to remedy the stealth coating that keeps getting damaged and cannot be repaired without a depot maintenance period? Or did I answer that question for you last week? “No plans to correct due to cost”. Very useful for carrier operations! From the horse’s mouth so to speak and a US one at that! Enjoy your… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Obviously if you stick Ur head in the sand, then it can’t be true!!!!
Costing some £35k per hour to operate has forced UK to cut flying hours on F35, potentially further increasing airframe hours elsewhere, but then, if we ignore it it doesn’t count……..😱

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Works every time!

It always pays to know 1. what you are up against and 2. what your shortfalls are, that way hopefully, you won’t run into any nasty surprises.

Some call it advanced planning, others call it anti-UK & US propaganda or being a Russian troll.

Personally, I find doing some research more useful than looking at what food stains appear on an officers uniform.

But that’s the sort of mentality you come to expect on forums like this!

download.jpeg
Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

The UK has never revealed its F-35 running costs so you are making up that number.

The US F-35’s cost $33,000 an hour in 2020 with Lockheed on track to reduce that to $30k in 2 years and $25k in 5.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

Actually Ron, no, it’s a number I’ve seen in several articles, whether correct or not I have no real idea, but if yours are correct then not so distant! What can be taken from everything that has been released is that the operating costs are still way over budget, what was originally stated and will continue to be so for the foreseeable future, not a ringing endorsement of LM or the programme management. What I have read from various US articles is that the USAF will not be able to pay it’s sustainment costs by 2034-5 if things don’t improve… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5
Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Desperately trying to duck the crap you posted that selling these aircraft to Greece would increase the hours on the rest of the fleet.

When you can’t find negative stuff on the crappy sites you frequent, you make up more negative rubbish.

Truth is that the RAF and RN love the F-35 because of the 5th gen capabilities.

Truth is that selling off the fleet of retired Typhoon’s wouldn’t hurt the RAF in the slightest.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Ron5

Good Morning America, I nearly said Vietnam! How’s the replacement for the F-16 going? Anyway, why use newer versions of Typhoon when we can reduce the airframe hours by using the older T’1’s with half their airframe hours still left particularly when the F35’s cost $36,000 per flight hour to fly and the risk of damaging the sensors and stealth coating. It can only fly at high speeds for limited bursts of 50 seconds without the risk of damage to both, it’s not really much use for air intercepts, is it! Here’s another good reason, one I’ve mentioned in the… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Watcherzero

Well, well. First fruits of the recent defence and security deal with Greece.
https://greekreporter.com/2021/10/26/greece-uk-deal-defense-trade/

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Hopefully this helps getting the Greek frigate contract.

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean
Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

The value is Macron getting some publicity in the face of his embarrassing kicking by the US, UK & Australia over the submarine deal.

The idea that Greece will buy 3 small frigates for 3 billion Euro is absurd.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Watcherzero

Would be a good way to get extra capabilities quickly. Fair play if they go this route, and, we should get some money back, not that it will necessarily go back into the mid coffers though!!

Geoffi
Geoffi
1 month ago

The FSS hasn’t even cleared the drawing board yet.
Its going to be a decade before we can achieve this capability again…

Alex Thomson
Alex Thomson
1 month ago
Reply to  Geoffi

We appear to not need it as the ships have not been used for years

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Geoffi

You don’t have this capability now, these ships were mothballed and would require extensive refits to come back into service.

Alex Thomson
Alex Thomson
1 month ago

Grape vine rumours the fleet gets better quality supply’s from the Dutch And German supply ships on NATO Exercises

Bob
Bob
1 month ago

I guess our stocks of ammunition are so low at the moment we don’t require much of an “at sea” replenishment capability?

Ok, I am being cynical, but for the best possible reasons.

Frank62
Frank62
1 month ago

Built in the 1970s & worked hard through the years, while it is shocking we’ve not got replacements building yet, we’re very lucky to get anyone to pay us for these clapped out tubs(No offence to those who’ve serve on them).

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago

We did RAS(S) with Fort Austin when I was on HMS Brilliant down south over 40 years ago.
I will repeat for effect…
40 Years ago.
She was almost new then…now…These are old, old ships.
Yes we should have had a replacement by now but we havent and that is a major issue.
Trying to keep them going would be a bottomless money pit…which would be nice for A&P who would do the work on it…not so good for the RFA/RN.

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago

What’s happening with the Waves? I think they can carry ammunition as well as liquids.

OOA
OOA
1 month ago

What does Egypt need LHAs and Fleet replenishment ships for?

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  OOA

Good question. To become a team player perhaps; replenish NATO ships in the Med or transiting Suez. A move with more political than military significance?

JOHNT
JOHNT
1 month ago

What does that bring the Ex-pat fleet to 1 Helicopter Carrier, 4 Subs, 10 frigates, 21 Minesweeper/Hunter, 9 Patrol Ships, 2 Tankers and 2 Support ships?

JOHNT
JOHNT
1 month ago
Reply to  JOHNT

Nearly forgot the ex RFA Largs Bay 1 LPD

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  JOHNT

Throw in HMS Challenger and HMS Roebuck too. Challenger’s now serving as perhaps the ugliest ship in the world.

Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
1 month ago

Personally I don’t think we should be selling any military gear to Middle Eastern countries.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

why ?

Bringer of facts
Bringer of facts
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

History and the duplicitous nature of some of these regimes.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

All nations are duplicitous, at their best geopolitical entities follow a level of enlightened self interest for at time with a few chosen partners, at their worst utter brutality and betrayal. So what is the particular reason we should not bet selling military equipment to any Middle Eastern nation ( which include a number of long time allies). Of course we will fall out with one or more of them and be betrayed, it’s what nations do. Lets be honest, within modern history we have been stabbed in the back and or front by pretty much every one of our… Read more »

Bringer of facts
Bringer of facts
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Yeah sure let’s sell Saudi Arabia some more advanced weapons while they fund illiberal faith schools in the UK …. and yet you see no problem.

David Steeper
1 month ago

Personally I hope we will soon be selling a lot more military kit to middle eastern countries.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago

Would you like to pay an extra 5p in the pound on the basic rate of tax just so you can keep the Moral high ground on arms sales to the ME?

Ask most other people in the UK and they will say sell it to them…I don’t want more tax.

And that 5p figure is pretty accurate… It comes from personal experience working for an organisation managing a contract for a nation that bought a lot of UK kit.

Bringer of facts
Bringer of facts
1 month ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Nothing to do with morality, these countries are not really our friends or allies, and I do like to see them get their hand on equipment that one day may be sold on, or possibly used against our interests.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

Nations don’t have friends they act in a way that is best for that nation at that time. Selling weapons, brings the nation wealth, influence and keeps our sovereign capability in place. None of the Middle Eastern national will ever be an existent threat to the U.K. so we play and get as much benefit as we can as anyone of our allies could and would sell us down the river at any time ( the US actual went out of its way to dismantle the British empire, look what happened to Afghanistan, as the Irish if the trust the… Read more »

Bringer of facts
Bringer of facts
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

So you are happy to give billions in aid to countries that actively train and equip enemy forces whose aim is to kill our troops (e.g The Taliban) ?

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago

Moral Certainly is the privilege of those who have never had to face very complex decisions that have no right or wrong answer and risk leading to harm and death no matter what. When you have had to make decisions that you know are likely to harm or hurt people, no mater the way you turn, you tend to see the world in its horrible grey complex reality. Some decisions are crap but people do their best and if they cannot accept anymore that making of grey painful decisions and have reached breaking point, they just have to fuck off… Read more »

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago

I feel the need to write a longer post than my shorter contributions here. I might ruffle some feathers among my contemporaries, but this is good news. The older Forts have been a drain on our resources for some time now, with one or both laid up in Birkenhead in various states of maintenance. This is where reserve fleets fall down slightly; it takes a lot of money and time to preserve an asset that might not ever go to sea again. It worked for Servern, but it hasn’t worked for these girls. They were both laid down almost FIFTY… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Lusty
Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Mate, my coffee had time to go cold reading this,!!! Top post fella, wouldn’t argue with any of it. 👍

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Hah! Thanks, mate. I thought you might be one of the people to agree!

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Agree about Largs Bay and George, it was a fools move to dispose of newer hulls and keep these older hulls. But that ship has sailed.

I don’t disagree with what you have said around the waste and difficultly involved in keeping these ships in service, but it does make it difficult if fort Victoria was out of action for any length of time, she’s had a fair couple of episodes in her time.

So is it better to keep one of these for a couple more years ?

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

I was going to edit that in, but sadly I couldn’t. In an ideal world, we’d probably sell one of these ships and keep one going, with the proviso of selling it off when the first hull of the new builds is ready for service. Then again, in an ideal ideal world, you could argue that we’d have the new ships ready by now anyway! If it could be used and make contributions, it would be better to keep one. But if it’s going to sit alongside anyway with the Tides and Waves picking up some of the slack, it’s… Read more »

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

A very detailed and informed response thank you.

In an ideal world-building, the next generation of support ships here in the UK would make perfect sense.

That said, as we are behind schedule and the possibility of the RN being required in numbers in the Asia Pacific region, would it not make sense to have at least one of the shelf in the meantime?

Karel Doorman is an example of this and pretty well-armed.

“The joint logistic support ship can sail at a speed of 18k and has a range of 10,000nm at a speed of 15k.”

https://www.naval-technology.com/projects/karel-doorman-joint-logistic-support-ship/

JLSS_Karel_doorman.jpg
Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

You’re welcome, Nigel. Ah, KD ships. You’re a man after Pacman’s heart! Off the shelf is fine, but it would still leave us with a rather unique ship in the long term (unless we sell it off, but then you’d still have people complaining). I’m all for having an all BMT-designed fleet: Tides, Solid Support Ships, Ellida, maybe Tide B2 to replace the Waves. It can’t be a bad thing to support British designers and have a fleet with some design and hopefully component commonality.

Ron5
Ron5
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

The Karl Dooorman is totally unsuited to carrier replenishment.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

I second Deep.
Read every word and my eyes are tired.
Post more mate.
Respect your views.

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago

Thanks, mate. I’d normally be the first to be criticising such a decision, but I’m okay with this. I respect your views too, but I’m sorry about the tired eyes! It’s a shame my post about the Falklands has gone… for now. :/

Totally different, but did you see the plans for new ships for the Scilly Isles have gone through after the Budget? We’re going to be receiving a new ferry, a new cargo ship and an island-hopper vessel. BMT has put forward some plans – hopefully, it’s something for Appledore?

Last edited 1 month ago by Lusty
Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

No, I didn’t see that.

Hope it is Appledore.

Falklands post? Which thread? MoDs removed it?

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago

This thread mate – it was a comment about a phrase that was written under a certain table on one of them during an air raid in ’82 – “If I can’t see the Argies, then they can’t see me!”. The table is apparently now at the FAA museum. I guess it got flagged as perhaps someone doesn’t like a spot of history. 🙄

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Pathetic. With a capital P.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Shame that got removed, I thought I was really interesting and a nice bit of real history.

Last edited 1 month ago by Jonathan
Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

As did I, Jonathan. Fingers crossed regarding your comment about Whimbrel.

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

What a great read! Many thanks Lusty. I’m wondering if their is a plan to replace RFA Argus when she retires 2024?

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Klonkie

You’re welcome, Klonkie. I certainly hope so. Argus is by far the most important asset if you compare her to these vessels, even though she is of a similar vintage. What she offers in terms of rotary-wing and hospital facilities goes a long way to supporting the RN and promoting ‘Global Britain’ – largely from a humanitarian perspective. I bet we’ll see more as part of the refreshed shipbuilding plan that’s due to be released soon. However, I can imagine we’ll see her role migrated onto the future SSS or Ellida concept. It would be nice if we could see… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Lusty
Klonkie
Klonkie
29 days ago
Reply to  Lusty

Sorry Lusty- I missed your reply from 4 days ago!
Thank you for the detailed response.

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Well written post Lusty. Up to your usual standard, a good read! I fear we can add RFA Argus to the disposal list in 2024, with no sign of replacement.

One would like to think some bright MOD minds would have laid up Fort George back in 2011 with an eye to reactivating her now- oh well.

Steve
Steve
1 month ago

Weren’t we talking about putting sanction in place against Egypt only a couple of years ago. How quickly things are forgotten for a quick buck.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

That’s the best way Steve to be honest. Just image if nations held grudges for ever more. No nation would ever talk or trade with anyone else.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

Egypt used to buy and use Soviet kit…After the Russian era equipment’s performance in various regional conflicts they moved over to US Kit…which is quite a telling indication of the Russian kits performance.

Steven Alfred Rake
Steven Alfred Rake
1 month ago

Lusty seemed to have hit the nail on the head with his post, I just hope that this sale can be used as a catalyst for the MoD to pull their fingers out and order some replacements (we need a little hope in our lives!!)

MikeB1947
MikeB1947
1 month ago

Can we now ask the Egyptians to return Black Swan class sloop HMS Whimbrel to the UK?

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  MikeB1947

That would be a lovely addition to the historic dockyard.

julian1
julian1
1 month ago

Can someone tell me why Egypt would even want these vessels? Surely the Egyptian navy is focused on the Med and Red Sea. Warships would never be far from port….or are they building a blue water navy?

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  julian1

That’s what I’m a bit confused over, at present they don’t have the oilers and other logistics to change from a brown to blue water navy and these will not be the answer.

I do wonder if they will be using them for more localised logistics as well as using their flight decks.