HMS Audacious, the fourth of seven Astute-class attack submarines being built by BAE Systems for the Royal Navy, set sail from Barrow-in-Furness for the first time on the 6th of April. 

BAE say that new ways of working and amended protocols have been introduced at the site, in line with Government guidelines, “to enable a small team of employees to provide vital support to the Royal Navy ahead of the boat’s departure, while protecting their health and wellbeing”.

The submarine was guided into open water for the first time before setting off on her inaugural journey to Her Majesty’s Naval Base Clyde, say the firm.

Audacious Under Construction MOD 45155779.jpg
Astute Class submarine Audacious under construction at Barrow in Furness shipyard in Cumbria.

Cliff Robson, Managing Director of BAE Systems Submarines, said:

“This is an incredibly difficult time for employees, their families and the community but, as is often the case in times of great adversity, it has been truly humbling to see everyone come together to support the Government’s critical defence programmes and help deliver HMS Audacious.”

Ian Booth, Chief Executive of the Submarine Delivery Agency, said:

“The departure of HMS Audacious from Barrow is a key milestone in the Astute Class programme. The delivery of our incredibly complex submarine programmes depends on the extremely skilled submarine workforce and close collaboration with our industrial partners across the supply chain to deliver a first class product for the Royal Navy. I am extremely grateful to everyone involved in the significant efforts to meet this milestone and the key roles they have played in the shadow of these unprecedented circumstances to get HMS Audacious to sea.”

Image
Image via BAE Systems.

The boat’s departure comes days after the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Defence, Sir Stephen Lovegrove, thanked the defence industry for its efforts to continue to deliver critical and nationally important defence operations and programmes during the difficult and unprecedented times the country is facing.

As SaveTheRoyalNavy.org reported in October last year, the boat has suffered issues with delays and a revised delivery schedule was delayed. Their article is well worth reading for an indepth look at the delays.

“HMS Audacious is in effect a ‘batch II’ boat with some significant internal changes from the first 3 boats and there is a long and complex legacy of political and industrial mistakes that have affected the Astute programme.”

The Royal Navy say that the 97 metre, 7,400-tonne Astute-class submarines are the most capable submarines ever built for the Royal Navy. The first three submarines, HMS Astute, HMS Ambush and HMS Artful are in service, while the final three Astute-class are at various stages of construction at Barrow.

59
Leave a Reply

avatar
10 Comment threads
49 Thread replies
30 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
25 Comment authors
Meirion XThe Artist Formerly known as Los Pollos ChickenAirbornejohn mellingDaniele Mandelli Recent comment authors
  Subscribe  
newest oldest
Notify of
Andy P
Guest
Andy P

About bloody time.

Rob Collinson
Guest
Rob Collinson

Yipeeeeeee

Barry Larking
Guest
Barry Larking

Good news. Best wishes to Audacious and families.

Harold
Guest
Harold

An utter waste of money,

Airborne
Guest
Airborne

What your benefits? Yep we agree.

HF
Guest
HF

I disagree with him completely but why do you have to make the benefit remark ? Do you actually know he’s on benefits and why, or is it just a standard slur ?

Airborne
Guest
Airborne

Why? Why not? He is a troll and I find his churlish comments and answers amusing. Can I ask are you the reply police?

HF
Guest
HF

Because your answer doesn’t challenge him. Ignore him if he’s a troll, ask him why he thinks that (probably a waste of time), or give him a short answer that doesn’t involve a cheap stereotype. If you post a public forum you have to accept that perhaps your comments may receive a challenge otherwise we might as well not bother.

Airborne
Guest
Airborne

Alas you are correct, I have had this discussion with Danielle a time or two, I have a habit of identifying a typical troll and then baiting him, mostly on technical issues although on occasion other areas, as I like to see them be totally unable to justify their usual piffle or rant. Should I stop, yep, should I be more mature, of course, can I stop, probably not as the fools do amuse me lol. Cheers and stay safe.

HF
Guest
HF

Fair enough – as I said, I disagree with him completely. Stay safe and hopefully we’ll talk again.

Helions
Guest
Helions

Hey! Let me try! Ummmmm…. I TOTALLY disagree with this program due to the fact that it’s a waste of money that could better be spent on designer RN uniforms from… Uhhh.. POSH SPICE… yeah… That’s it…

Cheers.

ChariotRider
Guest
ChariotRider

HI Helions,

That made me laugh – thanks 🙂

Stay Safe mate, and everyone else – even the trolls.

Cheers CR

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

I guess landing on ones head too many times doesn’t help – lol. Nothing wrong with a bit of banter if you know what I mean…

Airborne
Guest
Airborne

Who me or Harold! Had a few crappy landings to be sure, feet, knees, chin!!! Followed by lots of fucks!!!!!!!! And a left ankle in a rabbit hole, as I try to do a PLF to the right and yep….snap! Thinking about it my head would have been the best place 👍 Stay safe!

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

I remember my first static line jump. Like a muppet, I closed my eyes just after taking that first big step, when going through the door. I consequently tumbled causing the lines to twist. Lots of kicking and swinging to unbind them. Must be mad, as it didn’t stop me progressing on to free fall and then on to the para-wings.

Harold
Guest
Harold

Never claimed them unless you count a state pension. But there, I had a real job throughout my life unlike you. REad that NAO report yet about a managed decline in UK defence spending and equipment? No, Thought not. Rat a tat a tat.

Airborne
Guest
Airborne

And there you go….repeated troll behaviour. Anyway as I have asked prior, please give us a run down on your concept of operations, TTPs, formation strengths etc of your long called for and oft repeated demand for a purely Defence force. Take this as an opportunity to show you are not a troll.

Daniele Mandelli
Guest
Daniele Mandelli

Don’t waste your time my friend.

julian1
Guest
julian1

I would argue that you couldn’t have an effective defence force without such submarines

Airborne
Guest
Airborne

Correct mate but such considerations are beyond the scope of Harold and his ability to be proud of his ignorance.

Pacman27
Guest
Pacman27

Hi Harold

Can you provide some facts to support this statement please

HF
Guest
HF

He’ll come up with some specious half arsed rubbish.

Harold
Guest
Harold

Why do we need nuclear submarines? To keep up with a minority? Better spent on our health service and dealing with the real threats.

Airborne
Guest
Airborne

Is that the best depth of knowledge answer you can give? Wow!

David Flandry
Guest
David Flandry

He betrays his ignorance.

Pacman27
Guest
Pacman27

Harold

We need submarines as part of a balanced response to defend our country and maintain our democracy.

The NHS spend £3bn per week and that is an eye watering amount of money, but is not particularly efficient.

Whilst I admire the staff, throwing more money at the NHS is not necessarily the answer.

Also why does it have to be at the expense of a nuclear submarine that would only fund the NHS for 1 week as opposed to getting 25 years with of service.

short sighted my friend

julian1
Guest
julian1

A huge sum of money in spent on health and rightly so. A tiny amount of money is spent on defence and there is really nothing to cut any further. If you want facts look at defence vs health spending in the 1970s for each decade. Health spending increases, defence spending reduces.
I can’t see the point of your postings

Meirion X
Guest
Meirion X

The SSN’s of today, are the equivalent of the great battleships of the past!

Please learn some history!

john melling
Guest

I guess the £140.4 billion 2019\20 healthcare budget is not enough for you!
And it still can’t to the basics
The NHS has been a mess for decades! Its got no organisation
And as we are seeing with the COVID outbreak thanks to your Chinese Commie pals, its overwhelmed.
As for “dealing with the real threats”.. like yourself for instance?

Meirion X
Guest
Meirion X

Troll H’s style seems very much like
that G commentator who writes anti militarist Tosh articles!

DaveyB
Guest
DaveyB

Why should the NHS get any more money? Seriously though, the NHS gets just under 10% of the UK’s GDP, defence by contrast is just under 2% (according to the NAO). The NHS has become a crutch for society, who are mostly too ignorant or lazy to look after themselves in a healthy or beneficial lifestyle. It’s the same with schools, because the state provides, people take it for granted, therefore don’t invest in them and I don’t mean financially. A large minority of parents basically offload responsibility on to schools, expecting them to develop the necessary social and etiquette… Read more »

Andy
Guest
Andy

The NHS actually consumes 28% of public spending and 10% of GDP . We actually spend 1.6% of GDP on defence . In 2001 we spent 25 billion on defence in 2019 we spent 40 billion on defence In 2001 we spent 39 billion on the NHS in 2019 we spent 158 billion. The NHS employs 1.7 million people and another 462,758 through local authorities but pays the wages . It is the 3 rd largest employer in the world or 2 if you add the 462,758 indirectly employed a massive 36% of its budget is spent on wages and… Read more »

The Artist Formerly known as Los Pollos Chicken
Guest
The Artist Formerly known as Los Pollos Chicken

Harry come on man this disdain towards house insurance and critical illness insurances isn’t the way to go you’ll end up regretting it when your boiler packs up it’s already 16 yrs old .look how your trying to drive your Escort around town without insurance ended up ? A big fine and points your mrs was none to pleased with you for that one. No no Defence is just like those policies you shun always a waste of money until you need it .

Daniele Mandelli
Guest
Daniele Mandelli

Hope the rest of the batch 2’s speed up now with lessons learned.

The Battleships of the modern RN.

HF
Guest
HF

Always the way with a new class – lessons are learned from the early vessels.

Andy P
Guest
Andy P

I know these are a sort of ‘batch 2’ but the lessons were supposed to be learned from Astute itself. This delay is pretty poor considering we took long enough to get the Astute build going. We ran the S and T’s ragged to keep the Fleet boat numbers up only for this delay, its pretty poor that we’ve only got the first 3 in and they were delayed.

Paul T
Guest
Paul T

Im curious to know what differences their are compared to the first three but presume that information is not for public consumption.If its a case of short term pain for long term gain then the delays make sense,but as you say the Astute Build was problematic from the start,seems a bit risky too add more hiccups.

Trevor
Guest
Trevor

Worrying, Boris is in intensive care.
Leaving aside personal concerns, which should not be ignored, the socio strategic economic future of the country is on a cusp.

Mark B
Guest
Mark B

True Trevor I couldn’t agree more. He had managed to unite the Government, politicians & most of the public in a strategy to defeat this disease. It is a long time since a British leader got up close and personal with an enemy of the state. I hope he prevails.

ChariotRider
Guest
ChariotRider

Hi Mark B, I was no fan of Boris, but he has stepped up when the country needed him the most. He has on the whole impressed me during this emergency and regardless, to have the leader of the Government down at such a crucial moment is bad news. We will soon see how robust our Cabinet style of Government is. Given the speed of events – it is only about 3 weeks since the number of cases started to ramp up in the UK – it will be tough for Dominic Raab to step into Boris’ shoes and get… Read more »

Mark B
Guest
Mark B

ChariotRider I suspect Dominic may have an easier task following Boris than a more detailed person like Teresa May. Boris set the tone of Government with broad confident policies and then seemed to let people get on with them. If that was true we should see things continue as normal with Raab scanning the detail allowing Boris to remain the figurehead in control. Assuming this is the case we should see little change but if I’m wrong everything may come tumbling down.

ChariotRider
Guest
ChariotRider

Hi Mark B, What you say is true prior to the crisis, but recent reports suggest that Boris Johnson has stepped up and taken responsibility for the final key decisions. So I think there has been a change in style when the chips are down. The phrase being used is ‘first amongst equals’. The upside is that all key immediate decisions are reported as being made, so hopefully the PM will be fully recovered before the next wave of decisions will need to be made, as much for his sake and his family’s as for the country’s. Not because I… Read more »

Mark B
Guest
Mark B

Hi ChariotRider, I agree Boris has stepped up and made the key decisions. I got the impression that his cabinet were full of like-minded people and I have not seen any sign of dissent. Perhaps everyone is onboard – we will see. Dominic looked a little daunted by the big chair but possibly that will fade – he will not have time to dwell on it. It is in my humble opinion too soon to predict the PM return to good health. The next 3-4 days are key but it looks like a better than even chance for him. I… Read more »

ChariotRider
Guest
ChariotRider

I agree the next 3-4 days are key. I was very relieved to hear Boris was ‘stable’ this morning when I watched the news, for him and his family, but for the country as well.

Best wishes one and all.

CR

Andy
Guest
Andy

Fantastic news, but are these yesterdays technology already?

Andy
Guest
Andy

For the price of a single Astute we could have 32 of these.. https://news.usni.org/2019/04/17/u-k-developing-its-own-xluuv-for-royal-navy

Andy
Guest
Andy

Actually, it’s 128!

Ulya
Guest
Ulya

I had read this article before Andy, 128 of these teamed up with your Poseidon aircraft and maybe ground based cruise missiles could be very effective area control. 3,000 nautical miles, would that be enough to cover much of your North sea area of interest though?

Andy
Guest
Andy

Well Ulya, it might very well be enough, unfortunately if that is the case we would probably only order about 16!

It’s great to have you in this forum. Always nice to hear another perspective.

Andy
Guest
Andy
Ulya
Guest
Ulya

Thank you for the link, interesting article, and for your kind words Andy, but I think you are in very small club 😁

Ethan
Guest
Ethan

Well of course they are ‘yesterdays’ technology, because ‘today’s’ technology is being built and tested and ‘tomorrow’s’ technology doesn’t exist yet. Not to mention future boats will be updated as technology advances.

Helions
Guest
Helions

Glad to see the builder’s issues seem to have been overcome and the program is delivering badly needed boats to the RN. I’m also glad the George VI has finally had a (capital) fleet unit named in his honor.

Cheers and stay healthy all

ChariotRider
Guest
ChariotRider

Yeh, George VI played a significant role in the UK’s WWII war effort, so about time he was recognised…

Alan Reid
Guest
Alan Reid

Yes, it will be great to have a KGVI in the fleet. What a cool name!

julian1
Guest
julian1

Could the first 3 boats be brought up to the same standard/configuration as the last 4? Will that happen at the first major refit. With a class so small, it takes half the boats being built to achieve the “optimum”

Mike
Guest
Mike

What does ‘national defence’ mean in a pandemic? It’s no time to buy fighter jets

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/apr/08/national-defence-corona-pandemic-fighter-jets

🙂

Daniele Mandelli
Guest
Daniele Mandelli

Guardian.

Airborne
Guest
Airborne

You’ve cut and pasted that crap twice, damn you aren’t just sad you are lazy!