HMS Lancaster has today departed Portsmouth Naval Base, marking the completion of a period of maintenance and upgrades delivered by BAE Systems to “optimise her for upcoming deployments”.

The Royal Navy Type 23 Frigate will now spend a brief period on NATO tasking ahead of further deployments.

According to BAE Systems in a news release, in the past year, HMS Lancaster has undergone three major Fleet Time Support Periods (FTSPs) with BAE Systems in order to optimise and upgrade her capabilities, including:

  • Upgrades to the bridge, messes and crew accommodation facilities
  • The swap-out of two diesel generators simultaneously, a rare and significant undertaking which was completed ahead of schedule
  • New capabilities across communications, navigation and defence systems
  • Planned maintenance of various mechanical systems such as valves and propellers alongside emergent tasks such as hull maintenance and deck repairs

“In preparation for her tasking our teams have delivered three highly successful FTSPs,” commented Dean Kimber, Head of Asset Management for BAE Systems’ Maritime Services business.

“We are immensely proud of the work we have done. The hard work and expertise of the team throughout these major maintenance and upgrade periods alongside their agile responses to changing requirements and emergent work, means HMS Lancaster will leave Portsmouth optimised for any role the Royal Navy should require of her. All at BAE Systems extend their thanks to the ship’s staff for their close collaboration and input throughout HMS Lancaster’s support periods and wish the crew a safe and successful onward journey.”

George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. He also works for the NHS. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
Subscribe
Notify of
guest
40 Comments
oldest
newest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
jason
jason
7 days ago

Thats all great but We need massive upgrades in the firepower and the range of our weapons on our entire suface fleet.

Last edited 7 days ago by jason
Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
7 days ago
Reply to  jason

Can we stick a Himars on top of the hanger that would quadruple its ability in that regard 😇

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
7 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

You thinking of the Russian approach. Lash vehicles to the deck. 🤣🤣

Dave Wolfy
Dave Wolfy
7 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Hangar

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
5 days ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Apologies, sir. Inadvertent flag, collateral damage of cellphone use.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
7 days ago
Reply to  jason

Ok… Here is a 300mile range Anti ship missile. How will you target it? Radar is subject to this pesky thing called the radar horizon. You will need an additional asset to provide OHT and mid course updates. For OHT and mid course updates a data link via satcom would be preferable. So we need a long range drone or helo with EW , radar or EO fitted, satcom , and data links as well now. Oh and space on the upperdeck to mount the new larger missile with the 300 mile range. Damn…forgot about the upload in helo/drone operator… Read more »

John Clark
John Clark
7 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Absolutely, the T23 has been and still is a very capable frigate.

The 8 ASW vessels are still very capable and the GP variants are still up to the task.

It’s got a pretty broad range of capabilities and with Sea Ceptor it now possesses a very robust local area Air Defence Capability.

Add Wildcat and an old but still effective 4.5″ gun and you still have a great fleet asset.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
6 days ago
Reply to  John Clark

The USN has nothing even approaching a T23 for ASW. Everytime Ivan comes out to play there is a reason a T23 with 2087 comes out to play as opposed to a AB.
An AB is simple arse at ASW and couldn’t here a November on a calm day let alone their latest subs.. There is a reason why the USN binned towed array on LCS made by ratheyon and went for 2087.

Esteban
Esteban
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

The US has a lot of other assets to do that…. But I’m sure that’s stray plays well in the UK.

Airborne
Airborne
5 days ago
Reply to  Esteban

Yaaaaaaawn

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
6 days ago
Reply to  John Clark

I remember seeing a proposal to put 2 x 24*ExLS CAMM on the T23s in the SeaWolf bay area. I guess it was too expensive or maybe considered as too overkill for a dedicated ASW ship. I am pro AShM on a combat vessels but for this older ship even something like the latest Harpoon/Sea Serpent could be good enough. A lot of the T23s seem to be keeping their mounts interestingly enough. No real need for an even bigger gun but I do wonder why there wasn’t a Vickers/ BAE upgrade to the standard 5″ earlier in the peace… Read more »

John Clark
John Clark
5 days ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

I believe BAE Systems trialled a 5″ gun in the 4.5″ mount some years back, 20 years ago perhaps??

It never came to anything as cuts at the time meant the good old 4.5″ mount would carry on in service.

It will probably clock up 70 plus years and go out with the last T45, unless they get an upgraded gun fit at some point.

I wonder if the T31 main gun is being considered for the T45? It seems to me that increasing obsolescence will probably mean the 4.5″ mount goes during their next refits and upgrades….

Inch
Inch
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Maybe true what you say but other countries seem to manage it a lot better than ours and some with slot smaller budgets

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

This should be copied and saved for the next person who demands ASM on our ships regardless of the targeting issues.

Richard Head
Richard Head
4 days ago

Targeting issues? Isn’t this what satellites and INS are for? The Tomahawk Block Va has a range of 1,600km. Are you saying it doesn’t work?

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 day ago
Reply to  Richard Head

I refer you to Gunbusters explanation several comments up thread. I know nothing, I just believe the experts when they explain targeting isn’t so easy and sticking an ASM on a ship isn’t the be all and end all.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Oh, do u not just shoot it up and it kills a ship 1000 miles away a few seconds later?? Or the enemy is 500 miles west of your ship. Just shoot it that way and it destroys the enemy fleet😂😂😂😂😂
Thank you for a great post gb

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Another flaw in your logic gunbuster is you haven’t taken into consideration that some folks believe the world is flat. So horizon is not an issue😂😂😂

taffybadger
taffybadger
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

Third party targeting

Esteban
Esteban
6 days ago
Reply to  taffybadger

There are sensors available everywhere. That the UK does not have weapons that can use them is telling.

Airborne
Airborne
5 days ago
Reply to  Esteban

And your the expert in sensors being you have none! Guarantee that has gone over your head (and chip)

SteveP
SteveP
20 hours ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

I’m asking this question genuinely. It’s not a counter argument dressed up as a question. Given the difficulties that you mention in targeting SSM’s, why is the RN just about the the only navy not fitting them to its escorts. Surely every other navy is aware of the complexities that you describe and yet they all see utility in ship mounted SSM’s. Why is that? Indeed, after some years of relying on area defence SAM’s to double up as anti-ship weapons, the US Navy is now moving back to ultra long range SSM’s in the form of the LRASM. I… Read more »

OOA
OOA
34 seconds ago
Reply to  SteveP

Well put. I’d also be interested to get an answer to this question from someone who’s ‘been there’.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
7 days ago

Fantastic news. Up to date and ready to sail. Is it Lancaster that is going to replace HMS Montrose in the gulf for a few years forward basing?
Type 23 have really had some good upgrades over the past few years.
New engines, sensors, sea wolf replaced with mushrooms (sea ceptor)😜 along with the living spaces, the fancy hull paint that gives a speed boost and efficiency to list just a few.
With the big gun, 30mm guns, Gatling guns, machine guns she packs a punch for the smaller waters of the gulf.

Orcman
Orcman
7 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Does anyone know if the 30mm’s have been upgraded to carry Martlet LMM’s yet? We know it was tested on HMS Sutherland back in 2019.

Paul T
Paul T
7 days ago
Reply to  Orcman

Trialed but not taken any further AFAIK.

John Clark
John Clark
6 days ago
Reply to  Paul T

It would be a great and relatively cheap ‘Gulf’ or anti pirate upgrade for the T23’s.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
7 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Occasionally wonder what wartime flank speed would be after all upgrades,.including PGMU, are completed. May uncomfortably surprise Mad Vlad’s slobbering Orcs and the ChiComs. Couldn’t happen to a more deserving group of brigands. Believe RN official answer is “in excess of twenty something knots.” 🤣😂

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
7 days ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

Apologies, more appropriately labeled pirates

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
7 days ago
Reply to  FormerUSAF

On GTs with the governors removed it would be quite quick but the vibration would be a massive issue and it would shake everything apart.

Propellerman
Propellerman
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

and then some – the spindle torque on the propeller blades would probably be a limiting factor also

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
6 days ago
Reply to  Propellerman

The captain of Lancaster hinted/said he could get 32 knots before its midlife upgrade. The transom flap adds another knot and the anti foul paint a bit more.

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
7 days ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Ceptor now has anti air and anti surface capability.
She will also have 50 cals fitted.
Wildcat will be martlet armed and possibly Sea Venom when its cleared for use via a CCU.
She is also due to trial a small heli drone system integrated to the command system.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
6 days ago
Reply to  Gunbuster

So 4.5 inch gun, 30mm, 50cal, 7.62mm mini guns and machine guns and small arms. Positively bristling with guns. It will be going out with the wildcat I assume. Can you fit 2 wildcats on a type 23? I think it could be done on type 22 batch 3.
This new helicopter drone should be good for working out how to use it effectively/procedures for operation etc. Busy place the gulf and with gas/oil needing to be found from other suppliers it just got more important to keep open.

Paul T
Paul T
7 days ago

Curious as to why this work was needed ,as HMS Lancaster is a recent recipient of LIFEX,was this work deferred to get her to sea quicker ?.

Sonik
Sonik
6 days ago
Reply to  Paul T

I think LIFEX and PGMU are two different programs.

Paul T
Paul T
5 days ago
Reply to  Sonik

They are – the only operational Ship to have completed PGMU is HMS Richmond to my knowledge,this was carried out during it’s LIFEX.The work as described above for Lancaster was neither.

FormerUSAF
FormerUSAF
5 days ago

Administrator, any means to unflag comment inadvertently flagged?

Bob
Bob
5 days ago

Damn fine looking warships. On aesthetics alone, the T23 are world class.

Paul T
Paul T
5 days ago
Reply to  Bob

They looked good when new, now I think they look their age compared to the Stealthy lines of modern Warships, but in terms of service and value for money they must be up there with being some of the best Ships the Royal Navy has ever had.