The following is a list of ships and submarines of each type and where the vessels are based.

Deidre Brock, Shadow SNP Spokesperson, recently asked via a written question:

“To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, how many ships and submarines of each type are in service in each branch of the armed forces; and where each ship and submarine is based.”

The following table, published in response to the above question, lists how many ships and submarines of each type are in service in the Royal Navy and where each ship and submarine is based as of the 1st of June 2019.

Naval Vessels in Service as at 1 June 2019
Type of VesselNoBased
Aircraft Carrier1HMNB Portsmouth
Type 45 Destroyer6HMNB Portsmouth
Type 23 Frigate5HMNB Portsmouth
Hunt Class Mine Counter Measure Vessel6HMNB Portsmouth
Offshore Patrol Vessel – River Class4HMNB Portsmouth
Inshore Patrol Boat14HMNB Portsmouth
Offshore Patrol Vessel – Helicopters1HMNB Portsmouth
Landing Platform Dock2HMNB Devonport
Type 23 Frigate8HMNB Devonport
Ocean Survey Vessel1HMNB Devonport
Survey Vessel Hydrographic/Oceanographic2HMNB Devonport
Inshore Survey Vessel1HMNB Devonport
Ice Patrol Ship1HMNB Devonport
Ship Submersible Nuclear Trafalgar Class3HMNB Clyde
Sandown Class Mine Counter Measure Vessel7HMNB Clyde
Faslane Patrol Boat Squadron2HMNB Clyde
Ship Submersible Nuclear Astute3HMNB Clyde
Ship Submersible Ballistic Nuclear4HMNB Clyde
Royal Navy Gibraltar Squadron2Gibraltar
Fleet Tanker5Not base ported
Fleet Replenishment Ship3Not base ported
Landing Ship Dock3Not base ported
Primary Casualty Receiving Ship/Aviation Training Ship1Not base ported
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More than a little thin on the ground in some areas, notably escorts and SSNs. There is no hope of more nuclear subs any time soon, the RN must look to unmanned boats to fill the gaps.

There is a glimmer of hope that a 2.5% of GDP budget may mean more escorts in the medium term, but not much point in building more if you cannot man them.

The RN needs more numbers yes, but I would argue that we must end the FFBNW mentality if it is to be a credible fighting force.

Steve R

I have an idea on that, how to get more numbers. For a while now the debate has been whether to have 13 Type 26 subs or 8 + 5 Type 31s, which are meant to be no more than £250million per ship. How about reduce the Type 26 order by one ship to 12, then use the £1.25billion savings for the 5 Type 31s. That gives us 17 ships, plus the 6 Type 45s takes our total surface escort numbers up to 23. Okay the Type 31s will be sparsely armed for the £250million price tag but they’d be… Read more »


I would love to have you as my accountant.

The total budget is something like £11.25bn so with that you can have 9 T26 or 8 T26 and 5 T31; assuming T26 is £1.25bn and T31 is £0.25bn.

And as you reduce T26 hull numbers their unit cost increases.

But I do agree with your ending comment, I would like to see us produce a long run of frigates as the US has produced Arleigh Burkes.

The Big Man

I seem to remember that the T31 cost is ex kit and the T26 is fully fitted. Makes the calc very different. Also as said, order less T26 and cost is amortised across fewer hulls so become even higher per unit.


I hate these type of lists as the numbers look naked and less reassuring. We are beginning to speak about the UK being an ‘Island Nation’ again, which is obviously linked to Brexit. I’ve always said on this blog, that the Royal Navy will have to receive additional spending, to accompany a global trade strategy. The build rate of the TYpe 26/31 is worryingly slow and not in tune with a post-Brexit expectation?


We only react to the threat when the threat Is upon us. How do you think the Elite have remained Rich all these Centuries ?


You are right why spend money until you have to. The problem with that attidude, is our forces get injured or worse! Soft skinned Landrovers in Afganistan springs to mind.


One thing that concerns me is how one of our escorts – be it Type 45 or 23 – would deal with a coordinated swarm attack of 10-20 heavily armed fast boats. With Iran now threatening to seize one of our UK flagged tankers, this possibility could be very real. I fear we are woefully unprepared for such a scenario. I’ve heard pundits say we could take them out with an embarked helicopter but that couldn’t be shot down? Then what?

I would love to hear everyones’ opinion as this really is a concern to me.

Daniele Mandelli

Seizing Tankers is one thing. A premeditated attack like you describe on another nations warship is an act of war. I don’t think we are at that stage yet.

Terrorists maybe.

Daniele Mandelli

What about CIWS? Can that engage FAC type targets?

Martin S

The DS30 cannons on type 23 and 45 are more than capable of dealing with small craft and phalanx has a limited anti-surface capability.


With radars , hard to get very close. They monitor all ships 24/7 in a large area. If you get close i imagine you get a verbal warning, followed by an escort if necessary, then warning shots, finally termination. Boats dont go faster than bullets 😉 even a 50 cal will go through fiberglass hulls like butter at max range, and a phalanx will shred those ships in a matter of seconds, the main gun will go through steel hulls at greater distances. And if they managed to damage 1 ship, that would be an act of war and the… Read more »


A 50 knot speed boat is just a death trap even travelling at 30 knots into a following sea, all a 30 knot frigate has to do is take off at 30 knots manoeuvre until the speed boat has to run into the wind…I don’t care how fast a speedboat is in theory compared to a frigate in any form of seastate and running into the wind, it’s not going to make progress against a frigate if the frigate is driven well. The sea is not a road and nippy little speed boats cannot actual generally go faster that ships… Read more »


Thank you Ivan – a very insightful answer! I appreciate it!


I got trolled on the “save the royal navy” site for mentioning the Janes article that UAE was distancing itself from Javelin missiles & guided Chinese 155mm shells found in irregular hands in Libya. Such weapons loose from government control, can end up with terrorists or deniable actors. They can be mounted on boats of various sizes.


Sea Ceptor is capable of engaging small naval craft. One of the reasons it’d be nice to see it on the T45s.

Nigel Collins

A wee bit thin on the ground, and desperately in need of replacement in some cases. And we wonder why we invite trouble to our doorstep? In the short term, why not quad pack our Mk41 silos where possible, and purchase the naval strike missile for the RN while at the same time investing in the land-based version too. It has been designed to eliminate both ships and shore targets, even from the air! The latest radar and sonar could also be installed, all of the above can be transferred over to the Type 26/31’s as and when they arrive.… Read more »

Nigel Collins

Oh, and one aircraft carrier without an experienced captain.
Nice to have the numbers to pick and choose from!

2Commodore Nick Cooke-Priest resigns from Navy after being removed from command of HMS Queen Elizabeth”


Why not brimstone. Its light… Effective… Designed for multi concurrent targets. On the ship numbers… Despite corvette title reads like a FFP type 31 concept


Enough to sustain a decent sized shipbuilding industry in the U.K.


I would love too see the Royal Navy have more ships cos we have the people in Britain too build them

Nigel Collins

On a lighter note, some folks on here might enjoy this post?
My preferred choice apart from more Type 26’s

JULY 5, 2019
“In focus – the Arrowhead 140 Type 31e frigate candidate”

Nigel Collins

MEKO is a possible contender too.
2/3 years build time?

Paul T

I know I keep banging on about it but my choice would be the Italian PPA Class,to me its everything we need in a Type 31.It has lots going for it,good size and speed,multi-mission according to spec,adaptable and configurable regards weapon and sensor fit,and designed and in build in a country with an economy significantly smaller than ours – plus in looks alone with its sleek lines would make a natural successor to the Type 21.


I have just looked at the PPA for the first time in detail and wow, a offshore patrol vessel, really??? That is a medium frigate to most navy’s. If that’s their OPV then we should be very scared of their high end frigates! 3D Aesa radar and decent ew and sensors fit, 127mm and 76mm guns, asms, AA missiles and heavy weight torpedoes! Not to mention it’s size! Room in the hanger for two NH90’s. All for €5-600 million euros. Now let’s compare that to our River 2’s, oh dear. Now let’s compare Italy’s OPV against our proposed T31 Frigate….… Read more »

Paul T

T.S yes agree,perhaps the PPA is the Italian Navy’s take on the Royal Navy’s ‘Through Deck Cruiser’ trick, it would seem to be on a completely different level to the River Class OPV ,but perhaps represents a more realistic indication of what we can expect of a Type 31 if it ever comes to fruition.Again as you say the key is what exactly the T31 will be asked to do,austere is good for Anti-Piracy and Flag Flying but with so few Escorts it could be found very wanting as a Carrier Escort for example.

Frank the tank

Hi all, I come on here frequently and like to read your discussions on various topics. Regarding the number of vessels in the navy which is clearly not enough. I am in agreement with many of the comments posted. This is one issue that should never have existed in the first place. The navy has suffered cuts for decades. Like many of you we would love our fantasy fleets to be a reality.unfortunately we have a political class that are not strategic thinkers, forward thinkers, or resourceful when it comes to running/procuring a navy. We wait years for new ships… Read more »


I’m going to be controversial now and suggest that we have two carriers. If push came to shove POW could be operational quite quickly which in my book would bring it into the calculations of any potential enemy and consequently a deterrent at the very least. The US could be putting planes on her deck way before a US carrier might arrive from the states.

andy reeves

put the 20mm cannon, they were designed to carry onto the archers, drill them as a squadron and replace the existing sabre and scimitar who have both earned a well deserved retirement.

andy reeves

what are those bloody archers for?


Has Deidre Brock never heard of Google ?


The question should be,how many are actually fit to go to sea?

Matthew East

Depends how one uses the fleet. But if you use the rule of three then you should have one deployed, one in maintenance and one in training/minor maintenance/local waters. Either way you want to make sure you space your maintenance out or you run risk of entire fleet being down rather then 1/4 to 1/3rd.

Matthew East

A few too many people over simplifying the FAC problem against Iran making it sound like one FAC vs one Frigate/Destroyer when in fact it could be a dozen FAC’s coming from multiple directions against the one ship. Or that a number of the FAC’s have ASM’s that can be fired well out of range. It isn’t the threat of a small fiber glass boat armed with an MG or RPG but rather the 32 fast missile boats that can fire up to 128 ASCM’s or the Bavar class patrol boat which Iran has 92 of (apparently) and can be… Read more »

Adrian Cleall

myself I think .we should have 2 cruiser that will stay with carrier 24/7.and 2 more tyre 45..

Steve R

Would be lovely but where will the money come from? Even if defence spending increases to 2.5% it’s still not enough to buy two new T45s, which at this time would cost more than the original 6 did. I think that as there is now discussion of still ordering 13 Type 26s instead of the 8 plus 5 Type 31s, we should look at reducing that by 1 to 12 Type 26s and then use that saved money to build at least 5 Type 31s. Increases hull numbers and means we don’t have to use £1.25billion frigates for anti piracy… Read more »

Matthew East

Reintroducing cruisers to perform the exact same task as performed by the Type 45? Nah. If you want to introduce more ships then you need to decide what youwant to be able todo. If its a full CBG then extra frigate and destroyers are a must. Probably 8 Type 45’s and 12 Type 26’s though depending how the CEAFAR2 radar turns out in regards to AAW might be able toskip Type 45 restart and just build some or all of the Type 26’s into extremely capable AAW/ASW ships.


Well we still have HMS Belfast one of your 2 “cruiser “. Not sure which “Tyres” she wears though . Is anyone on here Intelligent or are you all just Idiots and Followers of Fools ?


Are you a born TOOL or was it learned over time?


I’ve “learend” it mostly from Wankers like you.

Matthew East

Actually it is spelled learned but nice try there Mr

Matthew east

It’s a typo mate. No need to be a wanker about it. This meant to be a community sharing information and views respectfully and if need be to correct bad information or in some cases an idea that isn’t feasible/doesn’t make sense in a polite informative way.

David Barry

The problem with those stats is they don.t show the number of platforms which are actually operational. Or, which can be manned and made ready in short order.


I’m just Sharing my Opinion mate. If you bunch of ‘Fellow Wankers” choose to spell things wrong then I’m really sorry but I’ll exorcise my Internet right to pick you up. Get over yourself mate.

Matthew East

No, All you are doing mate is being Mr high and mighty thinking you know all and that one person’s singular spelling mistake entitles you to ridicule them. You aren’t giving an opinion you mate are simply being a bully which is why I called you out.


85 Warships, but twice as many Admirals as warships?

David E Flandry

Just about. In 2004, the RN and RM , with the RFA, had 44, 500 personnel. There were 12 SSNs, and over 40 destroyers and frigates. Three mini-carriers, and auxiliary ships accordingly. The population was less than 62 million, and GNP much less than today.