Babcock has started construction of the first of five Royal Navy Type 31 frigates, HMS Venturer, at its Rosyth ‘frigate factory’.

After cutting the first steel on the programme in September 2021, the traditional keel laying event formally recognised the start of the build, including placing a specially commissioned coin under the keel. On completion of the ship, the coin will be presented to the Captain and crew.

Babcock said in a news release:

“The ceremony was held in the new build hall, the Venturer Building, which forms part of a £60 million investment programme, on top of an additional £100 million over the last ten years. The fully covered hall will house two frigates for uninterrupted, parallel assembly and will support increased productivity gains through improved access to the platforms and digital connectivity.

All of this underpins Rosyth’s shipbuilding capabilities and maximises the benefits of state-of-the-art engineering infrastructure and digital innovation. The Type 31 programme is an important part of the shipbuilding pipeline set out in the National Shipbuilding Strategy that was refreshed last month. The strategy’s stated vision for ‘a globally successful, innovative and sustainable shipbuilding enterprise’ is being borne out in Rosyth, with the company investing in and accelerating its ship building prowess and ambitions.”

Sean Donaldson, Babcock Managing Director at Rosyth was quoted as saying:

“The keel laying ceremony for the future HMS Venturer was a great occasion as we joined with our customer and colleagues to mark this milestone. It’s my privilege to work with this talented team each day and to witness their drive, determination and relentless pursuit of quality. A big well done to our competition winner Josh Duffy (7), who designed the coin that we had minted for the keel laying ceremony and whose mum works for Babcock at Rosyth and to our apprentices Ian Stevenson and Naimh Charleston for a flawless job laying down the coin.”

Dan Bishop, Director Ships Acquisition DE&S said:

“It’s great to be here today at the Type 31 Keel laying ceremony. This is a great example of successful delivery through co-operative working. The Royal Navy and DE&S worked in unison to set the Type 31 requirement and have successfully championed a new competitive procurement process – the first major warship procurement in a generation to meet this challenge. We’re really proud to work alongside Babcock to deliver this capability for the Royal Navy.

Today marks a significant milestone in the programme for the Royal Navy, Defence and shipbuilding in Scotland and it’s great to see the first of the British military’s new Type 31 warships keel being laid at Babcock’s Rosyth dockyard.”

HMS Venturer is expected to be in the water in 2023 with all five ships delivered by 2028.

George has a degree in Cyber Security from Glasgow Caledonian University and has a keen interest in naval and cyber security matters and has appeared on national radio and television to discuss current events. He also works for the NHS. George is on Twitter at @geoallison
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expat
expat
1 month ago

I’d like to see a construction video from Babcock, curious to see how these will go together.

David Lloyd
David Lloyd
1 month ago

Lets see whether the T31’s come in on time and on budget. Babcock have done well to win the contract and have shown commitment to both the Rosyth site and to the Royal Navy.

Having agreed the design, DE&S should now take a decidedly back seat and let Babcock do their job. Any interference in this project – or an attempt by the Authority to make design changes now the build has commenced – must be resisted. The whole world will be watching how this project progresses; potential export orders are at stake

expat
expat
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

👍

Ross
Ross
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Well said, just hope they (Navy and DE&S) resist the temptation to ‘f’ things up mid way.

Jonno
Jonno
1 month ago
Reply to  Ross

Talking of which I wish they had been the ‘F’ class. Foresight, Foxhound, Furious or Fury, etc.

Jake Pickering
Jake Pickering
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

If there are changes to the original design that become necessary then the design will have to be changed. If it improves the class of ship then why wouldn’t you carry out the changes?

L.S.R. Hearn-Smith
L.S.R. Hearn-Smith
28 days ago
Reply to  Jake Pickering

From what I understand a part of the deal was set attributes from the clients. Any changes will ave to wait for the Type 32, which I understand will essentially be a Type 31 batch 2 situation.
The need to guarantee new hulls in the water is paramount at the moment.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Agreed.

Joe16
Joe16
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Yep, the only input that Government/MOD should have now is when it comes to controlling cost risk: i.e. negotiating a slightly higher spend witihin one year to avoid delivery risk later. This is the kind of thing that makes order numbers fall, and sours industrial relations, so should be managed properly. I believe that Dreadnaught project has this provision built in, and seems to be having a positive impact compared to previous programmes.

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

So those that desire more CAMM missiles to be fitted should shut up?

Tomartyr
Tomartyr
1 month ago
Reply to  David Lloyd

Hopefully someone reminds them that, thanks to the modular design, they have all the time in the world to mess with it once it’s floating

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago

HMS FFBNW I can’t understand the positivity about these ships. They are not additional hulls but are replacements for existing Type 23 GP frigates on a 1:1 basis. The T23 carries 32 SAM’s, a good quality hull mounted sonar, is quietened for ASW operations, has a gun capable of NGS, ship launched ASW torpedoes and for most of their careers have carried 8 SSM”s. The replacement T31 as only 12 SAM’s, no sonar, no ASW torpedoes, no SSM’s and a gun too small for NGS. It’s little more than a large OPV. Sure, there’s potential for future capability growth (though… Read more »

David
David
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

I wholeheartedly agree – the Type 31s as they stand have a paltry weapons fit and are a deterrent to no-one. I can only hope the RN signed up to this to get the hulls to replace the outgoing Type 23s and keep the Treasury happy at the same time. I also truly hope the Admiralty has a plan to up gun the Type 31 class – significantly – at a later date.

charles verrier
charles verrier
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

As I understand it, they are meant for the lower-tempo roles that were a waste of a T23 (drug interdiction, etc.) The problems arise, I guess, is if something happens that needs a full-court press of first-rate Frigates, and instead of fielding 11 Type 23 (even with only some of those being ASW capable), you now field 8 Type 26 and some Type 31 and/or Type 32.

Although, its worth saying the Type 23 is/was 4,900t, while the Type 31 is 5,700t – They are not small ships, and they have the capacity for Mk41 as well as Sea Ceptor

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago

Are they meant for lower tempo roles? The current GP T23’s are used in the Gulf. Given Iran has submarines and large numbers of land, air and ship based ASM’s a T31 with no ASW capability and only 12 SAM’s should never be deployed there

Steve
Steve
1 month ago

The issue is what is classed as low tempo. They are clearly over gunned for policing roles and under gunned for war zones. What I am missing is what is in between where they will fit nicely

Steve
Steve
1 month ago
Reply to  Steve

I guess the gulf is the middle ground, with Iran swarm attacks, but should Iran want to they also have more advanced options to throw at a ship.

expat
expat
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Don’t agree, every system has to be maintained at a cost, carting around systems and ammunition that will not get used for general purpose duties is a waist of money, money that is better spent elsewhere in the MoD. With a wildcat on board these will do a number of tasks very well.

Last edited 1 month ago by expat
andy reeves
andy reeves
1 month ago
Reply to  expat

do we have munitions left or have they all gone to the ukraine?

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  andy reeves

I’ve received a contract to make arrows, I know who got the bow contract.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

Don’t let the Green pty, know or they’ll chain themselves too the Yew trees required

Quentin Drury
Quentin Drury
1 month ago
Reply to  andy reeves

Lol…We know the UK is at least 1 Sky Sabre unit down… 😆

Andy a
Andy a
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin Drury

Thought we only had 4 full stop pretty pathetic we need the bow and arrows soon!!!!

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  expat

So all the Navy’s anti submarine kit should be thrown away because it’s never used to sink submarines?

Beyond daft.

David
David
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

The number of CAMM hasn’t been decided yet has it? The renderings aren’t clear, but 24 is more likely and it’s a light enough soft launch system to add more. I think they will be the focus ships on new unmanned surface and undersea systems , its big enough to do that. A sonar system seems likely down the line based on a remotely operated surface or subsurface drone to tow it. The RN clearly intend to fit FCASW but until its in service and known if its two different missile for Land attack and anti ship, not committing seems… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by David
Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

1SL is pushing for MK41 VLS to be be fitted to the T31s, that would be a game changer , but I agree lets hope for more sea ceptors and a hull sonar added at fit out.

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
1 month ago

I do agree with this as a base requirement. But equally, technology is changing over the next decade so much and inevitably in both air and on/in the sea, drones are going to take on much of the performance and capabilities that was in built in to the T23s. The ships size and flexibility will make it ideal for whatever form these eventually take, space is a big asset for both these and the Type 26. It’s a matter of course, if and how much the MOD take advantage of that potential over time, the biggest concern and doubt based… Read more »

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

First ever recorded use of the term “ideal” in the same comment as “type 31”.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago

He should be pushing for 2xMK41s onto the T45s while they’re getting upgraded. Absolute no brainer! Seize the moment!

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

And CAMM down the sides or between Asters and bridge…if safe to do so.

grizzler
grizzler
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Hardly a replacement then- I assume they are cheap.

Dern
Dern
1 month ago
Reply to  grizzler

It actually is a decent replacement. 24 Sea Ceptors +2x40mm +57mm with programmable ammunition is a pretty quality defence, Sea Ceptor itself has a surface attack mode, but combined with a Wildcat carrying Sea Venom and Martlet it also provides a good low threat offensive platform. If there geniuenly is an ASW threat in an area with a Type 31 a Merlin can be embarked with Stingray and dipping sonar. ISSGW was planned to be canister launched off Type 31 too, but that program got binned. So FCASW remains a question mark, but certainly there appears to be very senior… Read more »

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Dern

The ship has zero offensive capability and a defensive capability limited to a few above surface threats. OPV seems about right.

Putting a Merlin on any ship, let alone a Type 31, does not confer instant ASW otherwise the Type 26 would be an IOW ferry with a flat top.

Dern
Dern
1 month ago
Reply to  Grinch

You could have just said “I didn’t read your post” and saved yourself a bit of hassle.

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

That’s incorrect, on 8 of the T23s were for anti-submarine warfare, the other 5 were general purpose frigates. The Type 26’s are the replacement sub-hunters, the T31 are to replace the general-purpose frigates. So comparing the T31s to the ASW T23s is somewhat disingenuous. The main gun on the Type 31, the 57mm is the same is on the US Navy’s new Constellation class frigates. It offers a wider-variety of smart munitions compared to the 4.5” of the Type 23s. The RN is also moving away from that calibre with the T26s getting 5” instead. It’s two 40mm guns are… Read more »

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Some logical thinking there especially regarding TLAN.

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

With you on all except, originally there were 16 T23s and IIRC the TAPS was interchangeable across the platforms. I’m dipping my toe that remote systems will replace alot of the ASW capability – I do agree with one poster who spoke of the waste of tooling around with lots of different types of ammo and agree a remote sensor platform can be swapped around when a ship goes in for maintenance. On balance, glad we are getting the platforms, hope we get 5 more this decade, would prefer to see them armed to the teeth but, happier if they… Read more »

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

Hi David, “happier if they come in on time and on budget.” I think that is the point here and one of the key means of achieving this is breaking the previously hard link between platform procurement and systems / payload procurement. A naval platform takes 5 years to build and lasts say 30 years. The payloads are usually dependent on technology that is under continuous development with the latest ‘chip’ having a half life of about 7months before the next generation comes along and pushes it of the top spot. As such any system based on microchips tends to… Read more »

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Most of the changes are not chips they are software.

The processing power of most chipsets is now so massive that it is not usually the limiting factor anymore.

So the days of physically changing plug in chips to upgrade a weapons system are well and truly gone.

Part of the reason things started to be kept vague after years of over openness was the increasing threat environment from Russia and China. As well, of course, as the budget pressures.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

I agree that unmanned platforms can be used to handle ASW sensing, and probably will. They still have to be bought and added to Type 31s and Type 32s if we expect them to to fill in for the lack of ASW patrol frigates next decade. There are trailing sensors that can be deployed from small surface drones, and project PROTEUS is supposed to give us a rotary platforms with sonobouys and dipping sonars, a poor man’s Firescout, I suppose. (Although Firescout itself isn’t that expensive as US platforms go.) However, given there’s budget for maintaining the Merlins up to… Read more »

Sim
Sim
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Sean, T23 has never had Phalanx, I think you mean TLAM.

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Sim

Never had that either.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Agreed.

Simplifies weapons stockpiles, training & supply chain.

It is a proven low cost weapons system with few integration risks.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

I can understand 5 of a first batch of a new class of Frigate but not 5 and that’s all your getting

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

100%

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

👍

Frank62
Frank62
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

While not a fan of much of the reasoning of having able/unable escorts(or ship-borne helicopters- ASW or anti surface, can’t do both unlike most navies) in various capabilities with so few ships in the fleet, T31s are NOT replacements for the ASW versions of the T23s, but 1 for 1 of the general purpose(i.e. not with the noise reduuctions of the ASW T23s) T23 versions.
FFBNW is an ongoing madness that will cost lives & material in a war.
There are some who refuse to see anything wrong just because it’s their party in power making the latest lash up.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank62

I agree with you Frank. Maybe some people think that AShMs are vulgar or un-gentlemenly and or genuinely not required for surface ships as these things are only for the sub fleet. It will probably take an extreme increase in potential threats or a real hard loss for them to change there minds. Nothing wrong with ships having their prime combat roles but strong secondary capabilities surely makes them more useful and more potent. You don’t have to go the “full Moskva” on armaments which looks like a severe OH&S risk. I read that the RAN AAW Hobart’s are getting… Read more »

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

*there… their

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

*TWA… TWS

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

T31 can take a Mk41 VLS that the T23 can’t. If it does get the Mk41 VLS then it will be a formidable warship. T31 is also much bigger and therefore more survivable. Its self Defence capabilities are spot on: personally I’d feel pretty safe onboard in a high threat environment. As safe as you ever do…. 57mm with the boosted programmable rounds is more useful than the 4.5” gun for a lot of uses. The lack of a hill mounted sonar is no big deal, it can be rectified. The question is what use is a hill mounted sonar… Read more »

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago

But saying that if it gets fitted with this and if it gets fitted with that, the T31 will be a wonder warship, is a sensible comment. Humbug.

There’s a very long list of RN warships that were built FFBNW and were never fitted. As an example, you could go aboard a T45 and see if you can find its Mk 41 VLS.

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Grinch

By the way, bigger most definitely does not mean more survivable.

Mac
Mac
1 month ago

..and not a word of acknowledgement from any of the SNP trash.

Jake Pickering
Jake Pickering
1 month ago
Reply to  Mac

They daren’t after contracting out ferry builds abroad and the embarrassing fiasco with the Ferguson yard and the Arran ferries.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago
Reply to  Jake Pickering

There is that irony, as you say. So, Westminster ARE building ships in Scotland, whilst SNP are building them in Turkey. 🙂

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Mac

Has Nichola ever ventured North of the Forth let alone gone into a working dockyard too admire Scottish marine industry and the laying of the fabled Golden rivet

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

Does she do much work with addicts? I mean being around all that glue BAE use will get you high!

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

Only if the Shed doors are kept closed so I’ve heard

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

Not that many would agree with you about the excellence of the Scottish shipbuilders. Lazy and Bolshie are two most commonly heard.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Grinch

When on Hunts MCM 3 up in Rosyth, refit in the Shed , having to work very Sectarian, Orange and left footers, graffiti, everywhere , not alot of comradeship and love lost there , felt like we needed an interpreter half the time ,

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Mac

To be fair it’s not really a massive news release. No main stream media is covering it and no one has probably asked the SNP for a comment. Is there an acknowledgment from the uk government?

Mac
Mac
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

What were their excuses when the Aircraft Carriers & first T-26 keels were laid?

Stuart Paterson
Stuart Paterson
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

UK government spokesman probably too busy watching porn.

Mark Forsyth
Mark Forsyth
1 month ago

Well a pretty “racy” timeline to put it in the water next year. In reply to others comments, I don’t think all the ships need to be high end and gold plated. As long as it can do the tasks to which it will be assigned, then that is good enough for me. To often the military have wanted the best of the best and top of the range for everything which often has resulted in failed programmes when budgets get cut or the scope changes.

Mattq331
Mattq331
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark Forsyth

I agree. Not every RN ship needs to be bristling with high-end weapons. There is a place for these ships, and I’d rather have FFBNW than nothing at all.

Paul42
Paul42
1 month ago
Reply to  Mattq331

We don’t have any vessels bristling with weapons unlike the Chinese, US, Russia and others……

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul42

Russia?? They will be lucky to know where the ‘on’ switch is located 😄

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

But they know where the Plug is not 3 pin the one they pulled on the Moskva

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

😄

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Well, with Latin script, I don’t doubt you…

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

You get my drift 😄

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

True.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Or if the ON switch actually switches anything on?

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul42

Yeah well ‘bristling’ with missiles didn’t help the Mockva….

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Indeed quite the opposite.

Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Yeah, I am still wondering how the neptunes got through

Sim
Sim
1 month ago
Reply to  Mattq331

FFBNW would be empty Mk41s, fitting them later could take months/years. Big OPVs.

Dern
Dern
1 month ago
Reply to  Sim

Yes, of course, OPV’s equipped with a SAM farm with a surface attack mode, modern combat sensors and information systems, a 9,000km range, 2 helicopters and space for a Mk41….

Or you know: Not an OPV.

Ian M
Ian M
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark Forsyth

I agree mark, at least if they’re built they CAN be FFBNW, if they’re not built at all, nothing to fit to!

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark Forsyth

Can it do the tasks assigned? The current T23 GP’s are used in the Gulf. Given that Iran has submarines and large numbers of air, land and ship launched ASM’s there’s no way a T31 with no ASW capability and only 12 SAM’s should ever be deployed there

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Is there a Destroyer or Frigate in service anywhere that would not be sunk by an opponent willing to fire enough missiles at it ? What would be the consequence of Iran sinking a UK warship?

Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
1 month ago
Reply to  David Steeper

That would be a big propaganda day for the the Mullahs, question is what would our response be ? and would it be effective ? we know the Iranians have put a lot of development effort into AA and a Anti ship Missiles.

David Steeper
David Steeper
1 month ago

Casus Belli. We’d hammer them. We wouldn’t be alone either. Their best missiles and radar are either knock offs of Russian kit or Chinese copies and we know how high tech Russian kit is ! They still use Hawk and Rapier bought before 1979 with Iranian names.

Last edited 1 month ago by David Steeper
Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Iran’s weapon of choice is swarms of gunboats in congested sea lanes, this platform is designed for combating that. With its Gun armament and CAMM, it’s probably the best armed frigate for engaging that type of enemy. If you nee ASW you stick a Merlin as a small flight.

The likelihood is these ships will end up with increased lethally and probably end up with a good load out of CAMM ( there is no reason not to have 24) as well as Mark 41 canisters).

Dern
Dern
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Plus the 57mm and 40mm both have programmable rounds that are designed to be used against ASuM’s. So even if the 12 CAMM launchers was accurate it’ll never be “Just 12 SAM’s”

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Dern

Exactly.

A 40mm programmable shell would take out a speed boat in one shot from the shrapnel effects alone.

Hull sonar is useless when running at speed, however quiet the ship is. In any case the Gulf is not ideal for sonar given the water depth and temperature layers.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

The Iranians choice of fast attack boat was the Boghammer used during the 80ts extremely fast and capable boat thank god the Iranians weren’t great at seamanship skills only good at collisions with tankers when packed with explosives and tankers that were not in Crocodiles (convoy) and protected by good old Leanders / 42s of the Armilla patrol

AlexS
AlexS
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Iran’s weapon of choice is swarms of gunboats in congested sea lanes, this platform is designed for combating that. 

Uh? no.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

Hopefully there is some kind of sub/ship detection system in the gulf already. Sub detection doesn’t just involve a frigate with hull mounted sonar. While helpful if u pick up an Iranian sub in a war setting on hull sonar chances are it’s already attacking you

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Yeah but the hull sonar could tell you that you’re about to hit a mine on the way into port.

Posse Comitatus
Posse Comitatus
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

It isn’t certain that there will be only 12 SAM’S fitted. That was from a computer rendering. We know that senior navy brass want the mk. 41 silo system fitted and I reckon that it will have the same Sea Ceptor fit as the existing T23. As long as provision is made for a bow sonar fit as well then these will be very capable ships for the RN.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago

The provision is inherent to the design.

You need the wet compartment and access lock for maintenance afloat.

How much use it is IRL is another question.

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago

Then you would be entirely wrong. They won’t have 32 CAMM cells.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  SteveP

I don’t understand, Steven. As you pointed out, the Type 23s deployed to the Gulf have mostly been the GP frigates, with Wildcat helicopters no trailing sonar. So why do you say there’s no way a GP Type 31 should be deployed there?

SteveP
SteveP
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Because T23 GP’s have a hull mounted sonar, 32 SAM’s and 8 SSM’s. T31 has only 12 SAM’s and none of the other gear

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Mark Forsyth

Yeah and then you get a Falklands war and all the low spec ships and systems get sunk and sailors killed.

andy reeves
andy reeves
1 month ago

will another t31 be built in tandem in the hall?

Quentin Drury
Quentin Drury
1 month ago
Reply to  andy reeves

Sure hope so, there’s plenty of room in the shed…it’s almost FFBNW!

Paul T
Paul T
1 month ago
Reply to  andy reeves

I think that was the plan – to have the ability to build two side by side.

Bringer of Facts
Bringer of Facts
1 month ago

Good news and impressive if shes is going to be floated next year … BAE take note!!

Albion
Albion
1 month ago

Perhaps someone could edcucate me. Here we have a ship of some 5,700 tons – a large ship for a frigate, and it is armed with sub-calibre guns. Why do our ships always seem to be under armed? Is it a cost thing?

grizzler
grizzler
1 month ago
Reply to  Albion

size isnt everything you know 😀

Dern
Dern
1 month ago
Reply to  Albion

Pretty sure that neither the Mk110 57mm or the Mk4 40mm gun fire discarding sabot rounds.

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  Albion

The age of 16” calibre super-firing triple gun turrets is long gone 🤷🏻‍♂️

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

Gerrard bull , had use for ex Navy 16 inch with his HARP gun now left too rust in Barbados had a gander at it in the 80ts thank god you didn’t have too hand ram the shell and cordite on them guns

David
David
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

I thought harpenden was 6 inch…..

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  David

The HARP gun high altitude it was used to fire Telemetry Darts straight up set a world record unfortunately Mr Bull fell Foul of work and got assianated after he had agreed too build a super gun for Saddam Hussein possible the work of Mossad???

Quentin Drury
Quentin Drury
1 month ago
Reply to  Albion

Some people like things under done…some like medium rare…some like overcooked. And probably everyone thinks they’re right. I wouldn’t come into the Indo-Pacific regions “under done”. At least down here the RAN is up arming it’s destroyers and frigates. Admittedly the RAN doesn’t have Astutes or Carriers.

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Albion

Yes, it’s a cost thing. Geo Osbourbe didn’t want to pay for proper warships.

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago

Great news. We should have used this business model years ago. Fixed budget, let industry come up with the capability within the alloted budget, build large hulls with plenty of growth potential, build quickly, then upgrade as we go along as required once in service. The tax payer gets value for money, the RN gets vessels delivered much quicker, and we avoid all the delays and constant changes to the requirement. And we increase the potential for overseas sales. 🇬🇧👍

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

The problem was that in that days of Counties and T42 the ship was built round the CMS computers which were huge and the wiring a nightmare.

These days the CMS fits in a blade rack in a small air conditioned room with connection via fibre or Ethernet.

So a big difference the ability to build a big hull and integrate ‘stuff’.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago

Agree the size of a counties Ops rm was massive too match the computer rms footprint and the Chinagraph stowage

Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago

I wasn’t thinking that far back mate, but I get what you mean. 👍technology has certainly come along way in a relatively short time period.

Ian M
Ian M
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Slightly off topic but relevant: On a trip to Huntsville, Alabama, I went to the NASA museum. There was a “ring” section of a Saturn V rocket on the wall, maybe 40′ across. Inside on the walls were the rockets computer guidance system, loads (maybe 40?) of black boxes the size of big cornflake boxes. In front of the display was a small mobile phone on a plinth. It had more than enough computing power to do the same job as all those boxes!

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

T45 was the first generation of warship that operated from totally COTS computers?

So not that recent?

In it’s first iteration T23 did still have some partially bespoke computer kit on board.

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago

WTF?? Are you saying integrating systems today is a lot easier than in the past? because if you are, you’re dead wrong.

Grinch
Grinch
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

You had me until you wrote “.. then upgrade as we go along as required once in service“.

Don’t think there’s a penny budgeted for that.

Beside, what if they’re needed before your upgrades happen? Just get sunk, right?

Louis
Louis
1 month ago

Amazing news!! Although it is sad that the navy is the only service to get UK built equipment recently. Hopefully that will change with Tempest which looks great so far but we have really lost our armoured vehicle production capability. Chally 2, warrior FV430 CVRT all great vehicles but left in service too long so we now have lost the production capability.

DRS
DRS
1 month ago
Reply to  Louis

Yes we should re build that expertise with boxer and Cross fingers and legs/dare I say it Ajax too. Then you have a small and steady drum beat of say 5/6 vehicles built per year per toe to ensure production is at a base level, skills retained etc and then surge up a bit when needed. Then you can also slowly evolve types over time rather than having a Big Bang approach each time.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  DRS

Were we ever getting that with Ajax? I though all the hulls were being built in Spain with assembly happening in Wales. Given their apparently sub-standard nature, could that change?

Challenger
Challenger
1 month ago

It’ll be an excellent platform to get into service and then build on – large, flexible, cheap and a proven design.

Proof will be in the pudding but once they enter service there will be plenty of options to add more Sea Ceptor (cold launched and light-weight), MK41 (which has already been mooted with the benefit that munition stocks will be procured for the T26) and a hull mounted sonar (the base design is used for ASW by the Danish Navy) would be a relatively cheap and easy addition too.

Great foundation to build on for T32 as well.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Challenger

Totally agree. While only 5 are on order if manpower and other requirements are met more could be built without breaking the bank. It’s never as simple as just get more ships. Got to have shore facilities, weapons, trained sailors, operational costs etc etc

Geoff Roach
Geoff Roach
1 month ago

Brilliant. nothing more to say really!

dc647a
dc647a
1 month ago

Need to split construction between two sites one in England or Northern Ireland, just incase SNP gets its way with independence no new contracts should be sent to Scotland till this independence thing is put to bed.

Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago

Evidently Type 31 quoted patrol areas exactly overlap the Batch 2 Rivers. Wherefore the latter? I’d have thought current trends in international relations would require these new vessels to be maintained for higher intensity duties. Preferably before Gov/MoD irrevocably decommission the B2s.

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  Gavin Gordon

They won’t decommission the B2s. They’re more likely to replace the three cheap B1s with four expensive B2s, and those B2s with the even more expensive Type 31s. Forth will stay in the Falklands and one of the T31s will go to the Gulf. This would mean the Batch 1 OPVs, which could all be directly replaced for about £120m, might be effectively replaced by four £300m frigates.

I really hope I’m wrong on that, but the B1s won’t last until the next scheduled build of more OPVs, so that’s probably what has been in mind (pre-Ukraine).

Last edited 1 month ago by Jon
Gavin Gordon
Gavin Gordon
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon
J.cochrane
J.cochrane
1 month ago

Surely before construction starts they should ask Brazil what they want in their new vessel !