The MoD has signed a £9.9 million contract with Merseyside-based Marine Specialised Technology (MST) for two new boats to replace the Gibraltar Squadron Fast Patrol Craft.

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Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago

3 GPMG. Good to see. Seems a lot to me. And FFBNW .50. Were Scimitar and Sabre similarly armed?

Good to see proper replacements being ordered when many feared those Archers would be the replacements, in effect a stealth cut.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago

As I mentioned previously this year. Dear Mr Collins Thank you for your email of 14 February to the Secretary of State for Defence, regarding your suggestion to save time and money in respect of defence procurement. Your email has been passed to Navy Command for a response. The Government remains committed to ensuring that the Royal Navy (RN) will have theships required to fulfil Defence commitments. The National Shipbuilding Strategy (NSbS) identified that there is a need for greater volume in the destroyer and frigate force in order to deliver the required operational flexibility. The Strategy explained that the… Read more »

Nick Bowman
Nick Bowman
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Nigel, could you post the e-mail you sent? Thanks

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Nick Bowman

Not possible I’m afraid Nick, some things have to remain personal! 😉

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Personally, I was hoping for something a little bit more like this X2 as they are better armed and can be utilised for more than one purpose given their location.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2grj5s_gObc

4th watch
4th watch
2 months ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

Right on! As I’ve said why have two tiddlers to do a mans job. Whats wrong with MOD?

Geoffrey Roach
Geoffrey Roach
2 months ago

…but fitted for 50 cal, not with…probably saved 50p… and £9.9 million. We have a luxury yacht builder in Plymouth who could probably have bettered that.

Ian
Ian
2 months ago
Reply to  Geoffrey Roach

Ordered sooner…..these might have prolonged Appledore ship yard

Mark
Mark
2 months ago
Reply to  Ian

Honestly I can’t see how such small craft could have kept Appledore going at a reasonable cost.

Herodotus
2 months ago
Reply to  Geoffrey Roach

I agree…£9.9m for a couple of lightly armed pleasure cruisers. Have they got gold plated loo seats and a jacuzzi to entertain guests. Tell you what, the MOD really know how to get a great deal. Anybody got a used car they want to sell cause I’ve got a great government department that stupid enough to pay twice its market price.

David
David
2 months ago
Reply to  Herodotus

The last time the Swedes ordered any CB90’s (2017) they cost $2.6m each. I know they are smaller, but far more combat capable. The larger a, more capable and much more heavily armed US Mk6 patrol boats cost $15m each…………

Paul42
Paul42
2 months ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Got to be honest, this is exactly the kind of appalling waste Dominic Cummings is on about! Ridiculous price for a cabin cruiser! In order to deter the much larger Spanish OPVs we need to put an OPV our own at Gib.

Callum
Callum
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

You’re complaining about waste at the same time as suggesting the extremely wasteful overkill of sending an OPV to “deter” an ally…?

The Spanish can behave like children all they want, why should we waste money playing the same game? They’ll never try anything, because they’d absolutely fuck themselves. A couple of boats to make sure their daft antics don’t actually cause an accident is plenty.

Clive Cartey
Clive Cartey
2 months ago
Reply to  Callum

Callum – just one point… an “ally” ? An “ally” is not one that allows the re-fuelling of Russian warships in the Spanish enclave of Ceuta. Puts a new spin on the Spanish naval harassment of US nuclear subnmarines trying to enter H.M. Naval Base, Gibraltar..

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

Spain is an ally, and also a member of NATO, they say silly things about gib, usually round election time, and that’s about it. Spain, where we all go on holiday, it’s not Somalia.

Paul42
Paul42
2 months ago
Reply to  Callum

The Spanish hold a real grudge over Gib, and will continue to do so. They will also continue to disrupt and be a nuisance to make their point. Problem with that is, one day, their antics will result in a serious incident, intentional or not….. having seen them up close, I can say the Spanish OPVs are actually quite sizeable for what they are, and certainly not worried in the least by our much smaller patrol boats.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

Unless Spain gives Ceuta & Melilla back to the Moroccans they don’t have a leg to stand on over Gibraltar. Sheer hypocrisy.

4th watch
4th watch
2 months ago
Reply to  Callum

Believe me in Spain Size Matters.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

Exactly.

Steve
Steve
2 months ago

Can’t exactly blame them, its a tiny landmass that is connected to mainland Spain and is a wee distance from the UK. If you put aside for a moment the people that live there, i don’t think there is much doubt that we should give it back to Spain as it clearly should belong to them. However both countries are democracies, and therefore should respect the views of the people that live on the rock. It’s going to be interesting to see how things develop on that front with Brexit, as no doubt the people of Gib will feel it… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Hi Steve. My “Exactly” comment was not in relation to the situation in Gib, but in agreement with Paul42 further up thread as an example of something that DC might look at as to value for money or not and waste. Having said that, what do I know? As Fedaykin says, who knows infinitely more than me on costs, these boats have other features setting them apart from “pleasure boats” so I’m quite possibly wrong and they are value for 9 million. On Gibraltar. We all know it has nothing to do with people, the Rock is a strategic location… Read more »

Cam
Cam
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Shut up, it clearly belongs to the UK, Should France be part of Spain because it’s connected? Being connected or distance has nothing to do with who owns anything…. stupid way of looking at things. And signed documents mean more and Spain ceded Gibraltar to the UK, this is why it’s STILL BRITISH TERRITORY JUST LIKE THE OTHER 14 OVERSEAS TERRITORY.

4th watch
4th watch
2 months ago
Reply to  Cam

Exactly and ceded it in some treaties since. Read treaties carefully before you sign.

Andy P
Andy P
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Steve, totally agree its down to the people who live there and its not like Spain have any moral high ground, apologies if its been mentioned but Ceuta and Melilla are exactly the same thing and they have no intention of handing them over to Morocco. Even if they did, it should be down to the people who live there if they want to become part of Spain, not the Spanish government.

Stevo H
Stevo H
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Steve, have you lost your mind? You think we should give Gibraltar to Spain, never mind that the British residents are very happy being British and as far as your “it’s a tiny landmass attached to Spain” comment goes…Gibraltar is an extremely important strategic location as it is the key to the Mediterranean Sea, you can control what goes in and out of the Med by having Gibraltar.
With that sort of attitude, what are you going to say next…We should give the Falklands to Argentina or give Ulster to the Irish Republic?
Wind your neck in sunshine……

Mark
Mark
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

You are treaty bound to allow unification of Ireland and Northern Ireland (not Ulster) if there’s a majority for it.

Bill
Bill
2 months ago
Reply to  Mark

Fine. We know that it might come to that. Do you think the people of ROI want that? Would be interesting to see such a vote.

Mark
Mark
2 months ago
Reply to  Bill

Realistically if the point comes that NI does have enough support to carry a vote, then it’s hard to imagine the Republic refusing it, economically NI is a basket case but no political party would survive arguing against unification.

Bill
Bill
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

With respect, that’s bollox. It’s ours. By treaty. Legal. Spain our ‘ally’ can frankly go and do one.

Paul.P
Paul.P
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

We are not going to ‘give it back’. Gib is a major intelligence surveillance hub, the gateway to the Med and now with the basing of a River 2 the home port to a reborn West Africa Squadron. Nigeria is of strategic importance – a country rich in resources struggling with Islamism and one of the few nations in the world right now with a healthy demographic profile. The Nigerians like babies!

Herodotus
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Steve, you daren’t express a moderate opinion about sovereignty on this site without incurring the ire (and insults) of some of the contributors. Sadly, schoolboy pride appears to be at stake here 😜

Steve R
Steve R
2 months ago
Reply to  Paul42

I’d imagine these boats have a fair few more sensors and other equipment compared to a cabin cruiser.

Also, putting an OPV there is pointless. Spain will never do anything, just make a lot of noise. Let Spain sail their OPVs there. Let them make a lot of noise and waste money from their own decence budget.

All we need these boats to do is ward off the Spanish Navy when they start posturing and playing silly buggers, and prevent an accident.

Fedaykin
Fedaykin
2 months ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Your average small pleasure cruiser doesn’t have 3 x 1000hp engines! Comparing these to a civilian pleasure craft is comically wrong, the cost will include a lengthy support contract no doubt add to that the paper trail needed to be even considered for procurement and then the military systems fit out for what are some pretty small but very powerful boats! These are not meant to bob about in the med with fishing rods trailing into the water or towing water skis. They are military boats requiring a whole different grade of fit and finish. Also fyi £9.9 million is… Read more »

Herodotus
2 months ago
Reply to  Fedaykin

I think that you have made my point….’peanuts when we are talking about defence procurement’ and ‘add to that the paper trail needed to be even considered for procurement’ ! It has 3 x 1000hp engines to stuff it up to 40Kts…how many times will it be able to achieve that speed in open water? I understand that the territorial waters of Gib are pretty small!

Fedaykin
Fedaykin
2 months ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Not really, your point was these are some how over priced pleasure cruisers. That is wrong considering their fit out and the nature of defence procurement.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Sometimes it’s not about the top speed, but the acceleration they can achieve to respond quickly.

4th watch
4th watch
2 months ago
Reply to  Fedaykin

Could have fooled me but wont the Spanish. The idea these will escort anything through the Straits is beyond parody.

Fedaykin
Fedaykin
2 months ago
Reply to  4th watch

They are not intended to escort anything through the straits, they are harbour patrol boats that only go so far as Gibraltar claimed waters outside the harbour.

Derek
Derek
2 months ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Build to take 18 months in a 6 year contract so the assumption is that it is an all in contract with delivery of full support and maintenance included for the full 6 years – so a build cost comparison with other manufacturer prices is irrelevant and misdirecting.

David
David
2 months ago

Scimitar and Sabre each had 2 x GPMG.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  David

Ah. Ta David. Up armed. Is that a first?!

john melling
2 months ago

Is that an extra gun I see poking out.. at last ;P

T.S
2 months ago

What no TLAM?! And what about loud speakers to play ‘rule brittania’ back at the spanish?

Callum
Callum
2 months ago

How suitable would these be as a replacement for the Archer class as a whole? They’re a touch smaller but nearly twice as fast, and it obviously makes sense to buy a single class of patrol vessel if possible.

Rudeboy
Rudeboy
2 months ago
Reply to  Callum

Whatever replaces the Archer Class arguably needs more accommodation for cadets etc on board for a period of days. Suspect whatever replaces the Archer Class will be a bit larger than them, and may have more FFBNW space for weapons, more space for boat handling and unmanned gear.

Blue Fuzz
Blue Fuzz
2 months ago

“There has been a British Armed Forces presence in Gibraltar for more than a hundred years”. True, but a very strange way to describe a 316 year continuous presence.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
2 months ago
Reply to  Blue Fuzz

Yeh, I spotted that and got the impression that the spokesperson didn’t actually know their history. Poor show.

Cheers CR

geoff
geoff
2 months ago
Reply to  Blue Fuzz

You guys beat me to it. I was going to say that there has been a British Armed Forces presence in Gibraltar for over three centuries. Also- a six year contract with both being delivered in under three years? I presume the balance is a maintenance period?

Stevo H
Stevo H
2 months ago
Reply to  Blue Fuzz

This is what happens when people don’t do their research……it makes them look a tad daft, but only to those who know their British military history.

Harry Bulpit
Harry Bulpit
2 months ago

Given that those GPMG are for show, and will unlikely ever be used. Why didn’t they mount something a bit more impressive like a 20mm. Would certainly send a better image.

Bill
Bill
2 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

Far too expensive and we don’t want to further offend the swarthy senors by fielding something that would do more than scratch the paint on their huge ‘patrol’ craft that they routinely deploy.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

And just waste some more money.

4th watch
4th watch
2 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

If they are stuck for .5 ammo, try it with miniguns.

Frank62
Frank62
2 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

The Archers are FFBNW a 20mm mounting, but GPMGs are fine for their true role which is to counter terrorist or sabotage attacks & general harbour policing.

Steve R
Steve R
2 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

I think you answered your own question there: if they are unlikely to ever be used, why put an expensive 20mm gun on there instead of GPMGs, of which we already have an abundance?

George
George
2 months ago

Hi folks hope are all well.
Good to see articles like this and also the UK being more assertive in the region considering recent issues of unprofessional behaviour of Spanish coastal patrols in the area, including dangerous incidents.
At a guess these vessels are coming at the right time considering the possibility of a no deal Brexit looming.
Are these new craft better equipped in respect to armoury if required to intercept hostile crafts?
Cheers
George

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  George

Seems so George. Bristling with 3 GPMG.

Bill
Bill
2 months ago

3 years to get 2 small patrol boats built and working? Everybody working from home then?

Steve
Steve
2 months ago

I kinda hope they station one of the river1 there for a few years whilst Brexit sorts itself out.

There is a lot of posturing going on and that is allowing Spain to keep sending larger patrol crafts into British waters. Whilst for sure we are not going to have a shooting match, but at least meet size for size to give a clear message that these are our waters, rather than a small archer intercepting them.

Daveyb
Daveyb
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

How about an off the books oil tanker. Oops sorry mate didn’t see you….

David
David
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

More likely to be the forward base for a batch 2…….

Stevo H
Stevo H
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

In my opinion Steve, I can’t see why they don’t send a Type 23 or a Type 45 for a few months, that’ll shut the Spaniards up for a while……or why not HMS Queen Elizabeth to make sure they get the message?? I’m all for that.

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

Shes been there already.

Harry Bulpit
Harry Bulpit
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

The area that these boats will operate in, is very small. A major war ship will have no space to manoeuvre and would take to long to respond.

Ron
Ron
1 month ago
Reply to  Stevo H

Stevo H, I do think that the CBG should be forward deployed to Gib. From Gib it can get to the Eastern Med, Carrabien and South Atlantic much quicker and reduces tanker requirements.
However for local patrols small craft is needed, I just wish that the MoD and the RN would see the need for a real fast attack missile boat

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
2 months ago

On the subject of NSbS, have just done another 6 month search over latest update on RSS Sir David Attenborough. Still evidently in information lockdown. The vesel itself looks ‘right’, so will be a fine asset, but it’s not a nuclear submarine! so why the privilege of the Official Secrets Act, to all intents and purposes?
Lairds should be faced with public scrutiny, with the laudable objective of forcing improved oversight and efficiency in order to aid survival in this most cutthroat industry, not given the comfort of a wraparound media security blanket, I feel.
Regards

Clive Cartey
Clive Cartey
2 months ago

” Fitted for, but not with ” – the current story of Royal Navy procurement. Somewhere, just somewhere in an MOD store there must a 0.50 cal HMG already purchased and paid for ? Or is it, as I suspect, perceived by the Woke/PC in the FO/MOD as piece of aggressive force projection ?
These new craft will have a wide-ranging role with limited-role armament. Surely there is absolutely no argument available for not fitting one. (Wait for it…..)
The one piece of good news…. the new craft will, for once, actually be ‘Made in England’ !!

Steve
Steve
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

I suspect that its more that as always we buy pretty hardware but don’t have enough stocks in the background to arm them. Irag/Afgan showed just how bad the stores were for basic gear and so wouldn’t surprise me if we dont’ have 50 cals spare that haven’ already been grabbed by other uses.

Clive Cartey
Clive Cartey
2 months ago
Reply to  Steve

Steve you could, frightenly, be right – but – can you imagine an MOD that doesn’t have one single 0.50 cal HMG spare ? An MOD that can spend/over-spend nearly £10 million GBP and not be able to specify a 0.50 cal within that budget. I am very afraid it’s rather like the argument at the start of the Afghanistan deployment about vehicles ” they must not appear aggresive to the civilian population ” and the endless UOR’s obediently produced just that – interestingly they didn’t appear to be “aggresive” to the Taliban either. So here is my challenge to… Read more »

Steve
Steve
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

Its not just the guns, it the ammo and spares etc. I would hope they would have plenty spare, but wouldn’t bet on it. Is a .50 cal really going to look a lot more aggressive than a few GPMG’s. I never really brought the whole we must not look aggressive position as the explanation. My feeling has always this was an explanation made to explain situation, rather than the reason behind it. Our military leaders seems incapable of coming out and stating realities of the situation, instead they seem to come back with the ‘can do’ mentality which causes… Read more »

Harry Bulpit
Harry Bulpit
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

The royal navy don’t really use 50cal. Only example I can think of is the mine sweeper in the gulf.

Clive Cartey
Clive Cartey
2 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

Harry, the .50 cal hmg information came from the Press Release issued by the MOD in their widely distributed illustration of the new patrol craft whereby “.50cal” is clearly stated – in writing. Along with the well worn, sad, phrase “Fitted for, but not with”. .. So, one presumes the information is correct.

Harry Bulpit
Harry Bulpit
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

I’m not saying that. I’m saying its unlikely the RN have any at hand. Or even trained crew to use it.

Clive Cartey
Clive Cartey
2 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

Harry, that is a problem for the MOD – not for me to justify but, again, the MOD did make the “0.50 Cal” statement in their Press Release material. Therefore, it can be presumed that allowance has been made in the nearly £10m GBP contract for the purchase, training and ammunition supply of said 2 x .50cal for the two patrol craft. To repeat – the MOD made the 0.50 cal statement – not me. All issues regardng acquisition of the 2 x weapons and subsequent training should be adressed to the MOD. If they are incorrect in their Press… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

Morning Clive and Harry.

If the option is there, which in my view is sufficient anyway, I guess it is a contingency in a war or major threat scenario where those bringing and using the .50 may be army, not RN.
In war does it matter what service the people on board are, all that goes out the window surely. It is there if needed.

Clive Cartey
Clive Cartey
2 months ago

Good morning Daniele Mandelli,
A very good point, well put. Totally agree.

Harry Bulpit
Harry Bulpit
2 months ago

If it is a war then then the crew would just receive training in the use of HMG. But for the current peace time role, there’s no need for all the extra hassle for two HMG.

Stevo H
Stevo H
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

Clive…..I’m pretty sure that they will have them on board, they’re quite tasty in action and would shred a Spanish pleasure boat to pieces.

Clive Cartey
Clive Cartey
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

Steve, tahnk you…..very good to hear !!

Stevo H
Stevo H
2 months ago
Reply to  Harry Bulpit

A couple of .50’s and a 20mm cannon would do the trick and keep the Spanish speed boats in port forever. Even the .50’s would do serious damage to a Spanish OPV, so even though it says “fitted out for but not supplied” about the HMG’S……it wouldn’t surprise me if they do actually have them.

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

I mean if we are at a point where 50cal is being fired at the Spanish theres a very big problem. IMO it’s got to be a priority of resources. Okay an extra .50cal is nice, and costs little, but you’re not going to start a war over a harbour incursion… so maybe it’s better to build a better NAAFI.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

Why fit a 50cal? we going to point it at the holiday makers? it’s Spain, in the med, not the gulf.

Clive Cartey
Clive Cartey
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Robert, …ask the MOD – they made the statement, in writing. in their Press Release material.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Clive Cartey

Yes, it says a 50cal won’t be fitted, unless needed, but some seem to think its critical they have one. So I’d say the MOD is correct. GPMG for show is enough.

Stevo H
Stevo H
2 months ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Because it’s a deterrent Robert, it’s the same in principle as the daft “why have aircraft carriers” or “why have any military at all” questions.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

It isn’t though is it, it’s Spain, the land of Benidorm and €1 beers, and paella. It isn’t the straights of hormuz. They are a member of NATO, RN and Spanish naval vessels exercises together regularly. It’s nothing to make a big deal of. These two new vessels will do nicely.

Dern
Dern
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

A 50cal on a pair of small boats on a small spit of land that is attached to your homeland is not really a deterrent.

Smithy
Smithy
2 months ago

Anymore news on it and when HMS Trent will be forward based to Gibraltar?

john melling
2 months ago

Looks more like a pleasure fishing boat

Rob
Rob
2 months ago

Call them HMS Drake & HMS Hawkins, just to keep them honest….

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
2 months ago
Reply to  Rob

More chance they will be called HMS Abbot and HMS Corbyn I suspect.

Glass Half Full
Glass Half Full
2 months ago

I presume these boats were the result of competition between at least MST and Holyhead Marine, the supplier of the 14.9m Island-class Police patrol vessel, and perhaps others. The price might reflect that neither appears to have a 19.0m craft in their portfolio, so MoD is perhaps paying for development of this platform. It will also presumably have higher levels of sensor fit and ballistic protection than a pleasure cruiser. Interesting to see the criticism on the spend for UK, nay English built, boats that are supporting 30 jobs and creating a further 25 new jobs. I’m pretty sure some… Read more »

Reaper
Reaper
2 months ago

Two. Just two. Jesus.

Gibraltar is a hive of all sorts of activity. I hope there are assets there that are not in the public domain.

Simon m
Simon m
2 months ago

To me these look good and capable for the job. Built by a UK firm on Merseyside even better. I can’t see why 0.5 hmg is ffbnw, but that’s RN tradition, I’m not even sure why its mentioned? Is upgrade to 0.5 hmg there to allow a indication of a change in posture? sure the Spanish would terrified?

But these are better than I thought we’d get. Still would have like to have seen something like Barracuda.

I’d still like to potentially see the archers stay there as well considering the number of incursions.

Cam
Cam
2 months ago

Where’s the Phalanx and 16 inch guns!!

Stevo H
Stevo H
2 months ago
Reply to  Cam

Now THAT would be impressive on an OPV……only the Americans would try something that made. I mean…..who else would’ve put multiple mini guns, bofors guns and a 105mm howitzer on a bloody Hercules?

Herodotus
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

The RAF ….but only as an internal load of course 🙂

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Herodotus

Morning H. You joke, but actually DSF were very interested in getting those combat hercs. Of course with finances it came to nothing.

Cam
Cam
2 months ago

Why the costly process of sending two p2000s to Gib if these are only a year or so away, couldn’t the two already there stay on untill then, and we should send the two p2000s being sent to gib to Cyprus, we should definitely have patrol boats stationed there again, it’s a far far far bigger base and more to protect.

Stevo H
Stevo H
2 months ago
Reply to  Cam

Cyprus is another important asset in the Mediterranean Sea……having OPV’s there as well would be good but we’ve got RAF Typhoons there and our big Base in Bahrain with its larger RN warship isn’t too far away.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
2 months ago
Reply to  Stevo H

I agree with Cam on having some sort of patrol presence in Cyprus. Not for dominating the sea lanes with OPV types, but patrolling the coastline in a security and CT role.

RAF Akrotiri is a large area with coastal sections. Within it, there is a small facility at Cape Gata. It once had LCVP and RCLs but unsure what is there now. The Archers could go there.

The Typhoons won’t stay forever.

dan
dan
2 months ago

Would be nice to put at least one M134 mini gun on it.

AlexS
AlexS
2 months ago

I suppose in 10 years we will have news every time a lifeboat is build for Royal navy.

phill
phill
2 months ago

10 million for a couple of small boats.Seems strange when its only 4 million for a brand new huge luxurious yacht kitted out with top end bespoke fittings and a dozen ensuite cabins all with expensive high end furnishings.Are these patrol boats made with gold and titanium aswell as a cheap fibreglass hull.Surely the materials to make these boats not including the gun, radar and man hours would amount to no more 300 grand each.

Herodotus
1 month ago
Reply to  phill

That was my assumption phill. Why would you need a build standard way in excess of a police vessel/Border Force vessel for the role that they will be undertaking?

Dern
Dern
1 month ago
Reply to  phill

Six year contract for boats expected to be in Service in 2-3 years….
clearly there’s more in the contract that building the two boats.

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
1 month ago
Reply to  phill

I’m not saying I have any clue on cost but, the improved engines and increased armour for the limited size magazine and any associated seaworthiness upgrades would account for some of the extra cost.

phill
phill
1 month ago

Maybe get iran to sell us 450 of their speed boats.The Spanish will just laugh at us anyway.If they wanted to they could close the straight of Gibraltar anytime they wanted.They would never attack gib because of the innocent peoples there.We seem to slag the Spanish military of for some reason but its on their doorstep of course they could retake it if they so wished to kill people which they do not.What are we going to do hope Egypt let us through the suez with an armada and Spanish subs waiting for us

Ron
Ron
1 month ago

How about giving these boats some real teath, equip them with three 0.50in/70 GAU gatling guns and four Spike ER missiles. The Philippine Navy has done somthing like this on a vessel of 17 meters and 19 tons.

That would give Spainish OPVs something to think about!