Rosyth will build the Type 31e Frigates while the Clyde will build the Type 26 Frigates.
The Type 31e Frigate is expected to sit at 5,700 tonnes and 138.7 metres in length, for a more in-depth look at the design of the vessel please click here.
This means that, between 2015 and 2035, yards in Scotland will launch 18 vessels of three types.
According to Babcock in a statement:
“Following a comprehensive competitive process, Arrowhead 140, a capable, adaptable and technology-enabled global frigate will be the UK Royal Navy’s newest class of warships, with the first ship scheduled for launch in 2023.
At its height the programme will maximise a workforce of around 1250 highly- skilled roles in multiple locations throughout the UK, with around 150 new technical apprenticeships likely to be developed. The work is expected to support an additional 1250 roles within the wider UK supply chain.
With Babcock’s Rosyth facility as the central integration site, the solution provides value for money and squarely supports the principles of the National Shipbuilding Strategy. It builds on the knowledge and expertise developed during the Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier modular build programme.”
Babcock’s consortium beat a BAE-led team and another led by Atlas Elektronik UK to clinch the £1.25bn deal for five ships.
According to the Financial Times in their analysis of this news in light of Babcock consortium partners H&W and Fergusons both going into administration in recent months:
“The Babcock consortium includes Thales, as well as H&W and Ferguson. Under the original proposal, the plan was to assemble the vessels at Rosyth using “blocks” built by H&W and Ferguson. It remained unclear if the role of H&W and Ferguson in the consortium would be affected by their predicament.”
Five vessels will be built at Rosyth. Babcock had previously warned that 450 jobs could be lost at Rosyth if it didn’t get the work.
“The company are extremely optimistic they can work with the recognised trade unions (Unite, Prospect & GMB) when they secure the T31e project to minimise the risk of potential future compulsory redundancies. To achieve this, in the meantime, the company shall look to release volunteers for redundancy under the current phase announced in February 2019.
However, whilst securing the T31e project will give the yard a future longer term there is still the matter of current surplus labour. It is for this reason the company and the recognised trade unions shall look to enter into a temporary mobility agreement to secure the skillsets required for the future. In the unfortunate event the company is unsuccessful in securing the T31e project it is likely we would be faced with the potential of 450 trade union members being made compulsory redundant, impacting all skill sets and all trade union collectives.”
Prime Minister Boris Johnson said:
“The UK is an outward-looking island nation, and we need a shipbuilding industry and Royal Navy that reflect the importance of the seas to our security and prosperity. This is an industry with a deep and visceral connection to so many parts of the UK and to the Union itself.
My government will do all it can to develop this aspect of our heritage and the men and women who make up its workforce – from apprentices embarking on a long career, to those families who have worked in shipyards for generations.
“I look forward to the restoration of British influence and excellence across the world’s oceans. I am convinced that by working together we will see a renaissance in this industry which is so much part of our island story – so let’s bring shipbuilding home.”
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:
“These mighty ships will form the next generation of the Royal Navy fleet. The Type 31 frigates will be a fast, agile and versatile warship, projecting power and influence across the globe.
The ships will be vital to the Royal Navy’s mission to keeping peace, providing life-saving humanitarian aid and safeguarding the economy across the world from the North Atlantic, to the Gulf, and in the Asia Pacific.”
The first ship is expected to be in the water by 2023.