Faslane is the second largest single-site employer in Scotland, after the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow.
Faslane is one of the Royal Navy’s three main operating bases, alongside HMNB Devonport and HMNB Portsmouth. It is best known as the home of the UK’s four Vanguard-class nuclear-armed submarines which carry Trident II D-5 ballistic missiles.
Figures released by the Ministry of Defence detailed how many civilian jobs at Faslane and Coulport are directly dependent on Trident. A Freedom of Information request sought out the size of the civilian workforce driectly relying on Trident, the MoD responded:
“There are 520 civilian jobs at HM Naval Base Clyde, including Coulport and Faslane, that directly rely upon the Trident programme.”
It’s important to remember that the 520 jobs mentioned are civilians and strictly those working on Trident missiles.
However, the base does not just support Trident armed submarines. In addition to the nuclear submarines, the base is home to 10 conventional surface vessels of the Sandown class mine countermeasure and Archer class patrol vessel fleets.
The Ministry of Defence also state that the number of people supporting the entire Trident programme, including the submarines on which the weapon is based, is around 6,500 jobs. According to a statement from the Ministry of Defence, around 3,500 are uniformed Royal Navy personnel, 1,700 are contractors and 1,600 are “other civilian employees”.
All 11 Royal Navy submarines will be based on the Clyde at Faslane from 2020, seeing the number of people directly employed at the base rising to 8,200. It is also understood that Scotlands ‘share’ of Trident is around £163 million a year and the annual spend generated by the base in the local area and the wider region is estimated to be more than £270 million per year, this includes spending by the 6,500 personnel based at Faslane in the local economy.
The number of jobs directly and indirectly supported by Faslane is just under 11,000; this comes from the 6,500 military and civilian personnel employed at HMNB Clyde and a further 4,000 created through the supply chain and the local economy according to an EKOS report commissioned by Scottish Enterprise Dunbartonshire.