Member of Parliament for Kilmarnock and Loudoun Alan Brown has incorrectly claimed that there are “no surface warships” in Scotland, that there are “frequent transgressions into Scottish waters” requiring “regular patrols” and that Rosyth is “being scrapped”, none of which is true.

At the time of writing, there are over half a dozen naval vessels and support ships in Scottish waters, including a frigate near Faslane, not to mention a massive naval base and an air base hosting Maritime Patrol Aircraft.

For those interested in the naval comings and goings on the Clyde then I suggest you check out @WeirSheila on Twitter for more high quality images.

Alan Brown Shadow SNP Spokesperson for Energy and Climate Change said:

“Scottish waters comprise over 60% of the UK’s waters, yet we have no surface warships. In fact, the most northerly surface warship base is located at the south coast of England, which means that scrambling a fleet ready escort takes over 24 hours to reach Scottish waters. Given that there are almost monthly transgressions into Scottish waters and we need regular patrols, why is the Rosyth base being scrapped?”

There are quite a few issues with this, firstly the claim that there are no Royal Navy warships in Scotland.

Alan Brown is no stranger to repeating this claim. Last year, he said:

“If we look at the here and now, the Defence Committee report, ‘On Thin Ice: UK Defence in the Arctic,’ confirms that the UK should focus more on its operability and presence in the Arctic. Right now, there are currently no Royal Navy vessels in Scottish waters and no indication of any resources being applied. Should not the Minister be doing more to protect Scottish waters?”

This wasn’t true then and it isn’t true now. In fact, why not have a look for yourself? Note that some naval vessels may not be visible if they turn off the system that allows for them to show up on this real time map, however many are still visible and on the date of publication there were a number of Royal Navy and RFA vessels in and around Scotland, this can be verified by using historical data from the above source.

Oh and to top it all off, he has claimed that “the Rosyth base being scrapped”… yeah I have no idea where that one comes from either, the site hasn’t been a naval base for decades.

What is actually stationed at HMNB Clyde?

HM Naval Base Clyde – commonly known as Faslane – is the Royal Navy’s main presence in Scotland. It is home to the core of the Submarine Service, including the nuclear armed submarines, the new generation of hunter-killer submarines and a number of other vessels of different types. Here’s a list of what’s based there.

Three Astute class SSNs, with a further 4 to follow.

HMS Astute on the Clyde
  • HMS Astute
  • HMS Ambush
  • HMS Artful

Seven Sandown class mine countermeasures vessels

HMS Penzance, a Sandown class vessel.
  • HMS Penzance
  • HMS Pembroke
  • HMS Grimsby
  • HMS Bangor
  • HMS Ramsey
  • HMS Blyth
  • HMS Shoreham

Three small Archer class patrol vessels belonging to the Faslane Patrol Boat Squadron

P2000 Class Royal Navy Patrol Vessel HMS Raider MOD 45151351.jpg
HMS Raider, an Archer class patrol craft.
  • HMS Tracker
  • HMS Raider
  • HMS Pursuer

Four of what the base is arguably known for, Vanguard class SSBNs.

Vanguard class submarine HMS Victorious.
  • HMS Vanguard
  • HMS Victorious
  • HMS Vigilant
  • HMS Vengeance

Do other UK vessels routinely sail in Scottish waters?

There’s a constant year round presence of Royal Navy frigates or Destroyers sailing through, exercising in or patrolling waters around Scotland.

Pictured below is a submarine and frigate engaged in a recent exercise near the Firth of Clyde, which is a common occurrence.

HMS Astute and frigate HMS St Albans on exercise off the Scottish coast.

The west of Scotland being largely uninhabited and with Scottish waters being vast, the area presents itself as an ideal exercise ground.

So where does this claim come from?

It appears to originate back in 2014 when Alex Salmond said:

“The navy does not have a single major surface vessel based in Scotland. The largest protection vessels stationed in Scottish waters are those of the fisheries protection vessels run by the Scottish government. It is absurd for a nation with a coastline longer than India’s to have no major surface vessels. And it’s obscene for a nation of five million people to host weapons of mass destruction.”

This is a curious statement in my opinion and in my view, it seems to be tad disingenuous as many of the vessels based in Scotland are submarines and not “major surface vessels” as Alex Salmond was keen to stress but are smaller patrol vessels and submarines. Making a distinction like that ignores the most capable anti-surface warfare vessels in the British fleet, the nuclear powered (not armed) submarines.

Why would anyone, when discussing how well Scotland is defended, want to discount the submarines?

The claim has now evolved into something new, the claim that there are no surface vessels of any kind in Scottish waters.

Verdict

The claim has (as shown above) morphed into there simply being no surface vessels in Scotland of any kind, major or minor.  The continued outrage this claim fosters appears to result from people not willing to do their own fact checking.

The claim that there are no surface vessels based in Scotland is false and to be frank, irrelevant. The nuclear submarines are primary anti-surface and anti-submarine platforms in the Royal Navy and Faslane hosts most of them. Has anyone mentioned the Maritime Patrol Aircraft?

 

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expat
expat
11 months ago

Article should also mention we now have an increasing fleet of MPA’s to patrol the north sea.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  expat

Yet have no vessels stationed in Scotland like the snp mo said and the journalist quoted exactly ? this so why unionism is dead in Scotland because you tell each other lies and swallow them whole.

Now please state where In Scotland are these fictional vessels stationed

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

Yes it is ? that’s why the journalist changed it from stationed in Scotland to just simple passing through ? this is why unionism is dead in Scotland and at record lows because the indoctrinated unionists can’t even answer something they themselves quoted exactly only to answer with something else ? it’s hilarious and goes to show that the indoctrination only the armed forces turns you in to a sheep that believes anything he’s told to even when the actual quote is in the article and isn’t what this fool answered in any way ? It’s like me saying Scotland… Read more »

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

Yet are nuclear subs not there to chase off Russian ships ? again this is why unionism is dying a death because you can’t answer what the snp no said ? and have to tell lies in the name of the union

Again how do these fit what the snp mp said exactly?
Sadly this just goes to show you like the journalist will try to change the quote so you can answer it rather than admit the truth that he’s spot on on this issue ? the indoctrination is strong in this one ☝️

Gunbuster
Gunbuster
11 months ago

Hey i know I’m being finicky but 2 of the Sandowns are based in bahrain at any one time…I know because I have been working on one of them for the past 2 weeks!

Richard
Richard
11 months ago

Dog whistle Politicians talking to the faithful. Let’s not let inconvenient facts interfere with a good story. It is worrying that some people will believe this rubbish.
As more information has become available through the internet the less it is believed. It’s a funny inverse law.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
11 months ago
Reply to  Richard

Hi Richard,

I think this is a small example populist politics. Which is deffinately something to be concerned about, just look at what is happening in the US at the moment, not to mention Poland, Hungary and others in around the world…

I agree with you that the internet was supposed to given access to information to all, instead we are moving into an age of belief – usually in fake news and falsehoods. Science seems to be losing ground. Worrying to say the least.

Cheers CR

Douglas Newell
Douglas Newell
11 months ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

I’ve always found the SNP disdain for “Populist Leaders” around the world quite amusing, as they are so clearly a “populist” party themselves. They spread fake news and and love t scapegoat the “English”.

That idiotic tweets like this come from an elected representative, just shows the nick of the party from root to stem.

Gareth
Gareth
11 months ago

Perhaps not surprisingly that post seems to have disappeared from Alan Brown’s twitter feed. Weird.

PurpleRonnie
PurpleRonnie
11 months ago
Reply to  Gareth

Well, we must keep tweeting it back to his twitter handle then. Shysters should not be allowed to hide.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  PurpleRonnie

Yes and let’s keep tweeting that he’s right as no vessels are stationed here ? that’s why the article quotes the snp mp directly then changes it from station in to just being in ? it’s pathetic and shows just how easily led indoctrinated unionists are

Bill
Bill
11 months ago

You must first remember that the nationalists are never concerned with the truth but are only engaged in grievances to keep their core vote happy.
Unfortunately they never let truth get in the way of any grievance real or usually imagined

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Bill

Yet unionists on this very article quote the snp mp exactly then answers something he never said and pretends that’s proof he’s right ?

Tell me where these vessels are station in Scotland?

Ron
Ron
11 months ago

I am starting to wonder if these Scottish MPs don’t look at RN deployments. Anyways is it possible that they mean Based in Scotland rather than In Scottish waters (deployed).

Callum
Callum
11 months ago
Reply to  Ron

At this point it’s probably safer to assume that they simply mean “the UK is failing is, we’d be so much better independent”, regardless of what the actual wording is.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Ron

So you think we have vessels stationed in Scotland? As that’s what he said and is quoted by the journalist if that’s what you call this schemer ?

That’s why he changed it like you have to just having vessels in Scottish waters not stationed in Scotland ? ?

Alan Reid
Alan Reid
11 months ago

I do often wonder why, if independence is such a great idea, separatists keep having to make stuff up !?!

Robert Stevenson
Robert Stevenson
11 months ago
Reply to  Alan Reid

Be lucky if we could afford a fish trawler and don’t get me started on the ferry building contract

Ian
Ian
11 months ago

Hi Robert…….She’s bought a new Crane………to build more ferries ?

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago

I know imagine unionists giving a ferry contract to a torys mates takeaway company ? oh wait you didn’t mean that because that’s acceptable to unionists as they are the ones that did that but snp baaaaad ? like the sheep unionists are

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Alan Reid

What did they make up? He’s right no navy vessels are stationed in Scotland that’s why your reporter had to change it from stationed to just being in Scottish waters ? you guys crack me up as you are clearly a cult that denies reality and has to make stuff up even when they use the exact quote first ?

If unionism is so great why did he have to lie to answer the question

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

And again these are submarines which wasn’t what the snp mp said ? sadly this is why unionism is dead in Scotland and the U.K. as a whole because you can’t admit to facts that show the union in a bad light because you guys admitted only 4 weeks ago that unionism is a cult that can’t vote against the union for any reason ? again helps if you don’t copy the journalist and answer a question that wasn’t asked ?

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

Yet none are what the snp mp said sadly this is what unionists do they answer questions no one asked because if they had to answer the questions asked them they would have to criticise the union and we know unionists cannot criticise their cult

Again prove what the snp mp said isn’t the but sadly you haven’t all you have done is answer a question no one asked ?

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

Again none of these are warships as he stated ? ? and can you show me where he said he’s wrong as nowhere can I see that. Again though I can see how you change warships like this page did to any vessels ? none of which are again what he describes

geoff
geoff
11 months ago

Unbelievable and he is not alone. Donald Trump lies every time he opens his mouth and here in SA we have some champions in the art of misinformation and deceit.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  geoff

Yet he’s not lied in anyway you can see this as the article quotes the snp mp directly then changed the answer by showing theres a vessel in Scottish waters when he said stationed here not simply passing through as these vessels were

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

Again hes want talking about submarines ? this is why unionism is dying in Scotland because you can’t answer simple questions honestly and have to try and blag your way past the facts

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

Yet none are what the snp mp described sadly this is why you turned a massive majority in to a minority in the 30% range

Robert Stevenson
Robert Stevenson
11 months ago

Well what do you expect, his nearest body of water to his constituency is Ayr Beach

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago

? what do you expect from a cult of union who quote the snp no exactly in this article then completely change what they said in their answer ? it’s hilarious how blind loyalty to the union blinds you to these very simple facts

Andy P
Andy P
11 months ago

With regards to the Rosyth ‘bit’, there is still nominally a Naval Establishment in Rosyth, its been rebranded as ‘MOD Caledonia’ but home to FOSNNI’s booty band, an RNR unit and a few other bits and bobs. Its pencilled to shut relatively soon, the year fluctuates, the last I heard was ’22. Whether that still happens with the T31’s being built remains to be seen. Its hardly a massive local employer and a bit of a ‘sleepy hollow’ so not a lot of mileage out of moaning about it shutting.

Ian Skinner
Ian Skinner
11 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

well, it was set up to guard against German battlecruisers, and there haven’t been any of those about for a very long time.

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
11 months ago

“Transgressions” !? From who?

It is at the other end of the UK where the transgressions are.

Mark B
Mark B
11 months ago

An independent Scotland probably wouldn’t be able to afford a navy capable of leaving Scottish waters for the open sea.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Mark B

Yea I’m sure the one nation that’s added profit to the union over the last 100 years couldn’t afford what a loss making nation riddled with debt could ? you guys crack me up

Mark B
Mark B
10 months ago
Reply to  Graeme

and where did that profit come from Graeme? Whiskey & what else?

Geoffrey Roach
Geoffrey Roach
11 months ago

“so where does this claim come from? ” Answer..an idiot. These guys want to look after their own defence…jeeeez

Alan Reid
Alan Reid
11 months ago
Reply to  Geoffrey Roach

Hi Geoffrey, I wish they were idiots – it would be so much easier! But separatists knows how to play their supporters: Feed a narrative of bogus grievance and gripe – and a sense that Scotland is somehow always being exploited and failed by the UK. Hence, “No Warships in Scotland !!!” ….. A diehard independence supporter/or even undecided voter will think, “That wouldn’t be allowed to happen in an independent Scotland! We would do it better if we arranged it ourselves!” There is a relentless feeding of that kind of narrative into public discourse over a range of subjects… Read more »

Andy P
Andy P
11 months ago
Reply to  Alan Reid

Evening Alan, you’ve pretty much nailed it, the SNP shouldn’t be underestimated, all roads lead to independence and at any cost, damn the consequences.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Andy P

It was unionist that admitted that it’s the union at all costs just 4 weeks ago by proclaiming loudly that their is no reason at all they could vote against their union not even if it meant their child dies in absolute poverty so long as it was in the union ?

Geoffrey Roach
Geoffrey Roach
11 months ago
Reply to  Alan Reid

Your right of course Alan. I promise you I’m old enough and experienced enough not to underestimate anyone in politics.. I think the combination of the C word, Trump and this guy sent me momentarily over the top! Stay safe.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Alan Reid

What lies unionists tell themselves ? no wonder the armed forces gets so many unionists as they demand blind loyalty like the union and unionists are only happy to oblige

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Geoffrey Roach

The claim comes from the fact that no navy vessels are stationed in Scotland ?

Sadly you guys know this that’s why the journalist changed it from stationed in Scottish waters to just being in Scottish waters ? ? passing through Scottish waters isn’t having them stationed here permanently

John Hampson
John Hampson
11 months ago

The SNP’s fantasy Defence Policy, published on this site, demonstrated they have not the slightest grasp of reality.

Andy P
Andy P
11 months ago
Reply to  John Hampson

To be fair John, it wasn’t the SNP’s defence policy, just a couple of boys who were SNP. As Alan says above, defence is very unlikely to be a priority for the SNP, they’ve never shown an interest (or aptitude) for it in the past.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  John Hampson

? unionists lies on here are so funny and you can tell the indoctrinated unionists are running scared of the Scottish people because they realise the unions finished thanks to unionist who thought brexit was worth ending their union for

John Hampson
John Hampson
10 months ago
Reply to  Graeme

1)Which came first the 2014 Independence Ref or the 2016 Brexit Ref? So how does your comment “unionist who thought brexit was worth ending their union for” make any sense at all? 2) Did you actually read what was being promoted as the SNP’s Defence Policy. If you did you would have concluded that there was no way Scotland’s economy could support it. As far a Unionists being brainwashed here are some FACTS that may help enligthen you. In 2019/20, the SNP govt had an income of £65.9bn. But it spent £81.0bn. So it spent 23% more than collected. SNP… Read more »

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  John Hampson

Here’s some real facts for you The snp government got 45 billion as gers states as that is the Scottish devolved budget The Scottish government has borrowing powers of only 3 billion pounds total The U.K. government spends over 30 billion in Scotland’s name ? ? I do love when brainwashed idiots pretend they know things because they can scan a document You don’t even understand the union you defend in any way or its structure the snp are only on charge of 60% of spending as that’s the budget the get frown Westminster Cheerio mister cultee Freeeeeeedom from the… Read more »

Frank62
Frank62
11 months ago

He should be prosecuted for spreading lies & slander & banned from public office.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Frank62

What did he lie about? As the only people that claim it’s not a power grab are unionists who admit they want the devolved parliament shut because they prefer worse services so long as it’s under union rule. Also remember unionists admitted they were a cult

peter french
peter french
11 months ago

Another classic stupidity from a SNP classic stupid man. How is it that idiots like this get to be an MP. Well the answer is that the man got to be an MP because he belongs to the SNP.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  peter french

? yes whilst unionists put up leaders that think scots aren’t genetically made to make political decision ? did you forget miss Lamont

DaveyB
DaveyB
11 months ago

I really wish that there was a law to prevent MPs publishing and spouting fake facts. It really gets my goat that they aren’t formally brought task on the rubbish the constantly utter to further the political machinations.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  DaveyB

You can’t have that then England wales and Northern Ireland would have to admit that they haven’t once managed to cover their costs with their income as only Scotland has made a profit in the last 100 years

Airborne
Airborne
11 months ago

God those SNP clowns get so boring and repetitive with their sad narrative aimed at their sheep like followers.

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago
Reply to  Airborne

? didn’t unionists admit to being a cult that had to vote for the union no matter what only 3 weeks ago ? it’s hilarious when unionists call others sheep when that’s all they are ? they even sound like it every day with their snp baaaaaad propaganda. Remember the union demands blind loyalty and you guys give them that as do the military who have been broken and indoctrinated in to believing the union is worth dying for ?

Airborne
Airborne
10 months ago
Reply to  Graeme

Wow, not only has it took you over a month to comment, your posts are very repetitive, badly worded with limited vocabulary covered by Emojis, and show a sad but expected total lack of knowledge about both the military and the subject matter in hand. Are you sat there frothing, gnashing your teeth? You sound quite sad, lonley and maybe feeling a little worthless. I do like, however your post about the military “dying for the Union”…hilarious. Not one person I know would die for the Union, in fact the continued whinging from the SNP and its jobless supporters, are… Read more »

Graeme
Graeme
10 months ago

? why is it this guy quotes the snp directly then starts to say they claimed something different? He says there are no Royal Navy ships stationed in Scotland yet you reporter changes that to in Scottish waters ? it’s hilarious and shows this page is nothing but a miss leader in facts as the quote is clear and there for all to see.

typical from the armed forces who are broken and indoctrinated on entry to the armed forces

Airborne
Airborne
9 months ago
Reply to  George Allison

Er no your not! You seem very slow, seemingly rather simple with a lack of basic education maybe. Perfect SNP drone.