Earlier fears that HMS Dauntless would spend the rest of her career tied up alongside have now been calmed, but only because HMS Daring has taken her place as harbour training ship.

It should be noted that the vessel has returned home from a lengthy deployment and likely would not go to sea again for sometime regardless of her usage in this role.

It is understood that HMS Daring, the first Type 45 Destroyer constructed, is currently in number 3 Basin in Portsmouth where she’s expected to remain for two years as a harbour training ship.

The vessel she replaced, HMS Dauntless, will enter refit and subsequently rejoin the active fleet. Information regarding the refit of HMS Dauntless came to light via a response to a question asked by Lord West of Spithead in the House of Lords:

“To ask Her Majesty’s Government when the refits of HMS Dauntless and HMS Lancaster will commence.”

The answer came from Earl Howe:

“On current plans, the refit for HMS LANCASTER will commence in mid 2017 and the refit for HMS DAUNTLESS is scheduled for the end of 2017.”

A very detailed fleet status diagram from SaveTheRoyalNavy.org showing the status of every Royal Navy escort vessel can be found in this in-depth article at the site.

HMS Daring has had a busy couple of years, In 2016 Daring deployed to the Persian Gulf to assist in Operation Inherent Resolve, the campaign against Islamic State. In 2017, after being relieved East of Suez by HMS Monmouth, Daring transited The Bosphorus for exercises in the Black Sea with the Romanian Navy. She is now in Portsmouth for routine maintenance before taking on the harbour training ship role.

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

I just cannot believe how bad the situation is. Just 6 escorts available and 2 of those need to be with QE. I just cannot fathom how the MOD believe this is enough and why they think headlines like this do not adversely affect recruitment and retention. We have OPVs and survey vessels filling in for escorts while assets like Daring and Lancaster just sit around. Absolute joke.


Money. Go complain to HMRC

Mike Saul

We spend £1bn on a warship then use her as a harbour training ship, we must best a very rich nation to be able to afford this either that for a very stupid one.

Bobby ball

Plenty of people want to still join however age limits need looked at I’m 42 and still willing and able I was ex army don’t see why I can join up I’m still fit and in my prime maybe the age limit need addressed


The ladders are a killer! Hence I walked when I got to 51. They would have let me stay till 60 but you dont want to be doing Fire Exercises at that age!

Mike Saul

Reading the savethenavy.org document we have only 6 ships available or on operations, 6 on trials, training or under going short term maintenance work, 4 in major refit and 3 non operational.

I knew it was bad, but is a national scandal.

Rule Britannia?

Mike McNamara

The shoestring that we have run our services on for years has now snapped.

Lars Cocklehurst

A long running farce of westend standards. This needs addressed and quickly the D class (for disaster) shows tge state of the fleet. So called state of the art ships are emphasis on STATE.

Its not manning its ships not worth ££ spent or up to the job.

M Glover

I took redundancy in ’96, because they invented “Lean manning”.
Endless 9 month deployments, no shore posting, leave canceled, constant watchkeeping with no day work rotation. Glad I left, as a Tiff I very quickly became a Class 1(as was) Chief Engineer in the Merchant (less than two years) earning three times as much and never being away more than three months.

Nick Bowman

All the above is certainly true but the problem is compounded by the deployment pattern. Escorts are sent off to train with the Romanians, to the Indian Ocean and to every last exercise. Times have changed. Now there is an aircraft carrier to defend. Existing escorts should increasingly be focused on escorting HMS Queen Elizabeth.

Should know better

Let’s not even talk about Dragon…

Mr Bell

The government need to wake up and fast. It is only a matter of time until we need a powerfull naval response and we will not be able to mount one. For gods sake Fallon and May get building ships and quickly. We need one type 26 built every year, the order needs to go back up to 13 ships. Then we need at least 8 ideally 10 type 31s. In the meantime armed forces salaries like those of key public sector workers have been wallowing below inflation since 2008. Most public sector workers are 14%-18% worse off now than… Read more »

Mike Saul

You can increase the manpower requirement as much as like but if you cannot recruit and retain the quality personnel required then it’s a meaningless number.

There are ways around the pay cap, such as retention and performance payments plus increased allowances.


I – like so many on this site – fully agree with you Mr. Bell but it truly saddens me to say it simply isn’t going to happen in my opinion. In fact, I am more worried of the reverse. What HMG has already signed up for in 2015SDSR isn’t fully funded (surprise!) and with 2Bn year in ‘efficiency savings’ required from the MoD by the Treasury, it never will. Rumours are already circulating that the Army could be cut to a mere 62k – absolute madness – but the idea is being kicked around. More cuts not more money… Read more »


Increase manpower? How? If people don’t want to join and the PVR rate is higher than the recruiting and training level it makes no difference. Pay 2000 was a disaster as was Engineering Branch Development hence the shortage of Engineers. The new pension is pants so there goes that incentive to stay in. Kids today don’t want to commit to a 22 year contract. They will and do walk after 5 years. Engineers get better pay and conditions outside ( Yes I do!) so why stay in? Add to that the 90s recruiting black hole that is working its way… Read more »


I was in exactly the situation that you are describing. Did my 5 years on extremely undermanned 45s for terrible money as an engineer, then used my experience to get a job paying twice as much with none of the sacrifices. You would have to be stupid not too!


I remember back in 05 during phase 2 they came to our adaws class looking for volunteers to switch over to cacs because they had a 22 going out to sea in a few months with only 30/40% of the OM’s needed, if it was bad then I can only imagine what it’s like now, after all the redundancies and ships sold

Paul T

Or weapons of peace. Their is two ways of looking at everything.


Genuine question, why do you read a defence website and post on it? You obviously do not agree with spending on defence so I am a little baffled why you would waste your time.


OK got it. What sort of ships are you suggesting? Corvettes / light frigates or smaller? How would you suggest they are armed and do you see the RAF needing anti-ship missiles to counter the lack of high-end surface ships? I take it you see no need for strike capabilities of any sort to aide in fighting ISIS or the next lot that need attention? To do what you are suggesting would take a major change in foreign policy and the general view of the world from our Govt and armed forces. The Falklands, Diego Garcia, Cyprus bases, maybe even… Read more »


do ISIS have a navy?

Steven Jones

The latest example of weasel words from UKdefencejournal.org

“It should be noted that the vessel has returned home from a lengthy deployment and likely would not go to sea again for sometime regardless of her usage in this role.”


Navy is too small. Problem is HMG is broke.


Things are worse than I thought.

Mr Bell

Recruitment and retention: put up pay! If as a nation we cannot afford to pay key public sector frontline personnel such as armed forces, police, firemen, ambulance men, nurses (basically all those in a uniform) then why did HMG cut corporation tax by 2%. Why do we give away £13 billion a year on foreign aid? Put up income tax by 2-3p in every pound and share that out 0.5p in the pound extra for defence, education, social care, nhs. Invest in the armed forces housing and basing in the UK (not abroad) so that they are not living in… Read more »

Peter French

So we are now down to 5 Destroyers ,and who know when that will be cut. The original requirement was for 12 Type 45 , which was then cut to 8 , and then 6 the Government citing that Type was more effective than they thought, What utterly spurious rubbish is quoted by Governments .
The so called ever increasing defence spend so often quoted by Fallon is fallacious. We will soon be as effective as the Swiss Navy. Its criminal how the Defence of this Nation is being eroded.


Billion quid that cost how on Earth is that a wise spend of so much of OUR money

Mr J B

the type 45 cost a billion each because all the investment in the weapons and sensors for the type 45 programme- so Sampson radar and aster 15/30 missiles “sea viper” were all lumped onto 6 destroyers instead of the 12 planned and forecast.
if we had got 12 hulls instead of 6 the cost per hull would have been a very impressive £500 million each- cheaper than a FREMM frigate and about 1/3 the price of an Arleigh Burke destroyer which the type 45 are arguably better at air defence ship than

[…] have limited offensive capability and their engine issues have now meant that one remains as a harbour training vessel. Rotating six £1 billion vessels that require a significant and expensive engine fix allows […]

[…] year we reported that HMS Daring was removed from active service to become harbour training ship due to manning […]