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HMS Artful and her crew will now be added to the Royal Navy Fleet.

Defence Minister Philip Dunne said:

“The handover of Artful to the Royal Navy is another major step in the Astute Class submarine programme, which continues to gather pace. These attack submarines will provide the Royal Navy with the most technologically advanced submarine Britain has ever sent to sea and will be a vital part of UK security for decades to come.

They are being funded by our growing Defence budget and our £178 billion investment in equipment, which is delivering the very best possible kit to our Armed Forces.”

Following her hand over on Thursday 10 December, the next milestone for the boat will be an official commissioning ceremony in March 2016.

Since her arrival on the Clyde in August, Artful has continued her programme of Contractor Sea Trials. Most recently Rear Admiral Submarines John Weale became the first officer to be officially piped onboard the Royal Navy’s newest warship, and there was a change of command from Captain Scott Bower to Commander Stuart Armstrong.

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