HMS Spey has now sailed from BAE Systems’ yard in Glasgow to begin Contractor Sea Trials in the Firth of Clyde.

It is understood that a mix of Royal Navy sailors, BAE employees, contractors, inspections authorities and civilian sailors are crewing the 2,000-tonne warship for the key tests and assessments off the west coast of Scotland.

The vessel left the Scotstoun yard at the weekend.

According to the Royal Navy here:

“The sea trials are a significant milestone in Spey’s short life to date and are designed to thoroughly test the capability and integrity of the vessel. Her systems will be tested to the max and will include live firing of her weaponry (including her main 30mm gun), pushing the ship’s engines to their full power and testing her top speeds before the ship returns to Scotstoun.

Her maiden voyage comes just weeks after the first sailors of her ship’s company moved on board and ahead of her journey to Portsmouth later this year when she will officially join the Royal Navy fleet.”

HMS Spey is last of five new River-class ships and will join her older sisters HMS Forth, Medway, Tamar and Trent, all of which are now operational.

When trials and training are complete next year, the Royal Navy say that Spey will operate as part of the navy’s Forward Presence programme, stationed around the world for several years at a time, with the ship’s company changing on a regular basis.

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The Artist Formerly Known As Los Pollos Chicken

The good news just keeps on coming ??? ?

No way the doomsday dafty left wing U.K. haters who slither through these informative posts will be able to contain themselves ? must be awful for them hearing another positive development ??????????

Daniele Mandelli



Will this yard and workers now support T26?


I do like the look of these Batch 2’s but I wished they had the 40mm gun with 3p ammo. Much more punch than a useful but light 30mm weapon.


To defeat my own argument, if they make a 5 missile Martlet fit as standard to the 30mm, then I am a happy bunny!


Happier…. But would rather see the 40mm. ?


Why would you like the 40mm? What advantage do you think itll bring to a Patrol Vessel, and what would you cut for it?
Maybe one of the 40mms on t-31?


50% more range and 3p ammunition flexibility.!

I would give up the BAE cosy relationship deals or procurement strategies / contractual outcomes that result in far too little bang for too many bucks.


Right but what does that achieve? In their current mission set please identify the need for 50% extra range.

And that’s not a cut that’s wishful thinking.


If fwd posted to Falklands then any additional range / capability would be useful… I dont know what all the potential fwd based locations will be but i can tell you that there are ‘pirates’ (cough…rogue Indonesian or Myanmar navy patrol craft ) that are operating in places such as the straights of mallaca and indian ocean that have 20mm / 30mm cannon. Also, Plenty of rogue nations with reasonably effective but short range helo based anti ship capability… Anything that helps extend ‘arms reach’ beyond 5km is a major benefit for P vessels operating remotely, and without air support.… Read more »


FWD deployed inthe falklands? That’s laughable. You dont need a 40mm to stop the Argentine football team taking photos on “Las malvinas.” Taking on rogue states, that’s outside a OPVs mission envelope, and would require significantly more (and more expensive) modification than just upgunning to a 40mm. And the RN asking to scrap MBTs in europe is laughable, aside from that not being the navy’s budget to play with the idea that adding some 40mmon to patrol vessels designed for patrolling low threat environments is not a replacement for MBTs or an army that will in the end be the… Read more »


Uk has too many paper capabilities spread to thinly with too little punch. Navy wont cancel MBT. The job of MoD is to determine / prioritise mission and resource appropriately. P vessels wont take on a rogue nation but a P vessel may have to deal with / be on the receiving end of the actions of a rogue nation. I would love the uk to have robust and balanced forces across all the arms. Reality is we dont. Question is. Where can we make the best / most robust contribution to NATO while maintaining a capability to serve our… Read more »


the Arafura class exist with a very different mission set, not really comparable (not even in price since the rivers include the cost of keeping the clyde ticking over).

You’re right, the MOD should prioritise, hence why they’d be mad to cut an actual capability (MBTs) for a hilarious non-capability (River 40mm). We have ships for operating in contested waters, those are the surface escorts. OPV’s are meant to operate on patrol in low threat environments, and their equipment suite (not just the gun) is made for that.


These are a bit more than just patrol craft, they are proper warships who’s capabilities can be increased quite quickly if needed. And if it’s needed then there is no issue with budget.


Fair challenge, buddy. What advantage would a 40mm Bofors have over the 30mm? Programmable munitions and range. The 40mm is a step change CIWS over the 30mm. These batch 2’s are to be globally deployed. They will inevitably face opponents from the Caribbean/African pirates to the Houti rebels and goodness knows who else, who may have been armed with the proceeds of the 1.5 billion dollars in cash sent to Iran on pallets by the idiot Obama. Armed patrol boats have been taken out by missiles from the falklands to the gulf war and the 40mm, while not a guarantee… Read more »


Cool, but you don’t need that capability. Rivers are intended to operate against smugglers and having “presence” in low threat environments, at a minimal daily price tag to the RN in both £ and manpower. None of their tasks call for more range or expensive programable ammunition (and no, they probably won’t face opponents in Africa, thats Frigate territory). Saying you wouldn’t make cuts remains wishfull thinking, you can’t just say “oh we should push hard on the price” because what if Bofors isn’t willing to make the cut in price? If you want to make a proposal like this… Read more »

Meirion X

I wonder if the fitters, now the River B2s have been fitted out, now be going into Goven to work in the hull of first T26? I noticed when some of sections of the T26 were lowered into place, there were a lot large boxes and creats in them. Most likely equipment to be fitted in the section?


The fitters are already in Govan.
Combat System outfitting, commissioning, test and trials takes place in Scoutstoun, and sea areas, after the hull is floated out from Govan and sailed down to Scotstoun.
A process already in place from RCB-B2.
LfE one would hope.


Do you think it’s possible to fit out all the equipment in the hull sections before they are put together?

Paul T

That seems to be the way of Modern Warship Construction,especially so with the Building of our Submarines.