Nuclear submarines HMS Talent and Trenchant were decommissioned at Devonport Naval Base today – leaving only 5 attack submarines in Royal Navy service.

The Royal Navy say here that HMS Triumph remains in service, but the Trafalgar class has been replaced by the seven state-of-the-art Astute-class submarines.

“Four Astutes have been commissioned, soon to be joined by number five, HMS Anson, which has completed successful diving checks. Like the T-boats before them, they are deployed around the globe daily: HMS Astute sailed to the Pacific and back with the Carrier Strike Group last year; HMS Ambush launched furtive raids by Royal Marines in Norway’s fjords as part of wider UK/NATO operations in the Arctic this spring; and newly-commissioned HMS Audacious has been on patrol in the Mediterranean having reached full operating capability on 4 April.”

Commodore James Perks, Commodore Submarine Service, was quoted as saying:

“The Trafalgar Class developed a world class reputation and defended UK interests unstintingly across the world’s oceans.  The Astute submarines have now taken up the baton, continuing to protect the UK from threats with deeply professional submarine crews. As we look back with appreciation at the service provided by HMS Talent and HMS Trenchant, we can also look forward with excitement to the future. 

We have some of the best attack submarines in the world in the Astute class and developments in submarine training mean that we will continue to have the best men and women sailing and fighting them, protecting our nation far into the future.”

You can read more on this here.

For more in-depth information on the attack submarine fleet, I recommend you visit the excellent NavyLookout here.

HMS Talent retired. Royal Navy down to just 5 attack submarines

 

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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Jon
Jon
1 month ago

It will be interesting to see if these boats are dismantled in my lifetime.

The Big Man
The Big Man
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

There’s a good chance if you are under 25!
They have a plan now so we will soon not be able to state that every nuclear sub the RN ever commissioned still exists.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

I hope they keep them out of Scotland. Don’t want the boats getting given to a possible independent Scotland no matter how small they chance is. Is there somewhere in the rest of the U.K. the subs at Rosyth can be moved to aswell. Sooner the better incase Nicola gets her way. 😂😂😂

Jon
Jon
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Exhibit them in St Magaret’s Loch, a short walk from Holyrood. They’ll be a super tourist attraction for any visiting Chinese or Russian holidaymakers.

Last edited 1 month ago by Jon
Tim
Tim
1 month ago
Reply to  Jon

Holyrood Palace is 70m long by 70m wide, but it doesn’t have a spire.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

When I was based up in cochrane and the polaris boats would come in for maintenance no one batted an eyelid never saw any CND at the Dockyard gates even though in one of the basins was the old Dreadnought Sub decomissioned covered in Gull crap

Dc647
Dc647
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

There’s 14 decommissioned nuclear subs in Devonport and 7 in Rosyth at the moment. I agree no more assets or money should be spent north of the border on subs and ships while the SNP are in power.

nonsense
nonsense
1 month ago

If all goes well, the last non-acoustic detection technology tested in the Trafalgar class was successfully completed?

And 10 years later comes the Dreadnoughts class, which sets the new standard for submarines.

Phylyp
Phylyp
1 month ago
Reply to  nonsense

 non-acoustic detection technology 

I’m curious – what technology is that? Wake analysis, or some other undisclosed technology?

nonsense
nonsense
1 month ago
Reply to  Phylyp

https://www.navylookout.com/royal-navy-submarines-and-non-acoustic-sensor-technology/

https://aquarius-project.eu

There seem to be various attempts such as laser and chemical detection.

However, even if the technology that can be practically applied in a military conflict is completed, it will not be publicly announced.

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Phylyp

I would love to tell you phylyp, but that ice-cream van outside my house, with the blacked out windows and the big aerial on top hasn’t moved for days, and my TV seems to have a lot of interference, so best not……..

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

John Have you paid your licence fee, I’d get onto it if I was you.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

That’s the new TV licence detector van John

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

I wouldn’t mind so much guys, but he speeds off every time I try and get a 99….

Barry Larking
Barry Larking
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

😄

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

Argh now was it regular or diabetic they don’t want too be done by trading standards (pseudonym for FSB ) next time ask for an iced tea but take a giieger counter

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

🤣🤣

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Phylyp

Sticky outy bits on the sail among other things. Pictures are on internet.

Phylyp
Phylyp
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Ah, so its the wake detection stuff.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Phylyp

Wake detection,’ sniffer’ probes for decaying nuclei and discharge contaminants are normally what they are looking for.

Andy P
Andy P
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Sticky outy bits on the sail

Or the ‘fin’ as they call it in The Andrew. 😉

DFJ123
DFJ123
1 month ago

Right so we don’t have anti-ship missiles because the anti-ship role is covered by the SSN’s. Yet we only have five SSN’s of which only a couple are going to be available at any time to protect the carriers and stalk Russian Subs in the High North whilst also ’tilting to the Pacific’ and protecting overseas territories so dispersed that “the sun doesn’t set on them”.

Bob
Bob
1 month ago
Reply to  DFJ123

Correct 🤬

ExcalibursTemplar
ExcalibursTemplar
1 month ago
Reply to  DFJ123

Bonkers isn’t it.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  DFJ123

I think they are planning to deploy virtual subs.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Saves money and you don’t need submariners pay too do the job

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  DFJ123

The navy have known this was happening for a while so all 5 should be available until the next one comes along. We knew this was going to happen years ago but it has been a sad decline. Hopefully when the Government says where’s the nearest navy vessel to a crisis they will get told 8000 miles away. (You forgot to build them).

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

I think HMS Anson will be ready around the end of the year, with HMS Triumph hopefully out of refit sometime next year.
Agamemnon possibly by early 2024 and Agincourt before end of 2026 would be my guess.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Fingers crossed, it would be good to to see the A boats out. I wonder if they will keep the 2024 decommissioning date for Triumph, as she’s just coming out of refit and Trenchant managed 36years..so Triumphs a spring chicken at 31, if she lasts as long as Triumph see could tick over until Agincourt is ready for commissioning. It would keep a steady 6-7 boats once Anson is ready.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Yes it might, it would depend largely on how much of her core life remains, as her refit doesn’t include a re-fuelling?
Unfortunately it is what it is, so we will just have to wait and see, never a good state to be in really.

John Williams
John Williams
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

War with Russia, could be months away.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  DFJ123

Worth reading in full while China seems to be increasing its submarine fleet. “Last December Kishida announced the government was exploring options to give Japan the capability to strike enemy bases. Since then, calls have intensified from within Japan’s ruling party to develop “counterattack capabilities” in coordination with the US. The move would stretch the limits of the country’s pacifist constitution but expand Tokyo’s ability to retaliate against mobile and submarine-launched attacks.” “However, the war in Ukraine seems to be shifting attitudes. A recent poll conducted by Asahi Shimbun and the University of Tokyo showed 64% of 3,000 people surveyed… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Nigel Collins

I think the British government would be delusional if it thought it could take on the PLA. Even if every single asset was deployed near China it would be struggle just to try and contain them. If they really are the enemy every single ship will have to have a full suite of antiship, anti air missiles, torpedoes and currently they do not have this. Even with every allied navy ship the PLA probably still win in a numbers game. Now this all assumes that the Chinese training and operating standards are the same as the wests. I do not… Read more »

Spyinthesky
Spyinthesky
1 month ago

Does one laugh or cry, the more our beloved war leader boasts about protecting our allies, standing up to tyranny, tugging the Bears tail and sending British military into potential danger zones with inadequate resorces, the more capability is being retired with little to no indication of new and replacement material, even that generously given and rapidly being expended in Ukraine. Now this news though I had thought Talent was due for decommissioning in Jan tbh. Am I being too cynical if I claim this is more about bluster and gaining approval ratings than any rational understanding of the true… Read more »

nonsense
nonsense
1 month ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

good opinion

peter fernch
peter fernch
1 month ago
Reply to  nonsense

Yes link that to an Army of 80.000 soon to be less an Airforce of 10 squadrons a Tank force of 132 servicable units . Its a sorry joke
One would scream with lauphter if it wasnt so serious

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

Replacement material being 7 Astute class boats.

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

Taking bets that all seven will not be operational.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  David Flandry

Well, I will get my order in now, its a case of your finest red please!!

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  David Flandry

Of course they won’t, they have to go through the same refit schedule as surface vessels. But availability and smart manning will mean these boats achieve a higher availability rate compared to the Trafalgar class.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  David Flandry

I will put a crate of beer on that.

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

Be thankful the full 7 A boats were ordered.

Sadly it isn’t the kind of thing it is easy to make loads more of or train more crews. Although an increase curve should be defined and planned now. I do see a need for crewed SSN / SSBN in the long term.

4 SSBN is fine when taken as a part of NATO. But we really could do with 12 SSN so 4-6 are deployable are any one time.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago

The full 7 boats! Sounds like you think thats a lot. We had 28 attack subs in 1982. We should have well over a dozen now.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

I think 7 is too few.

But given cuts elsewhere like T42 -> T45 we were lucky to get the 7….

peter fernch
peter fernch
1 month ago

Yes I remember that the original no of Type 45,s to be ordered was 12 then cut to 8 then cut to 6 the then Labour Gov stated w”Well they have prooved to be more capable then we thought” one wanted to pull the pistol out right then the sheer stupiity of that statement was byond parody
THe lack of numbers infects all of our equipment and our capabilitys . Yes we spend over the 2% but its the nuclear deterreant that swallows a big proportion of spend from Aldermaston to TRident missiles

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  peter fernch

Thank god Comrade Corbyn never won the 2017 election we’d of had Trident silos full of allotments ooh fresh veg

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Tommo

The shame is I think the man is quit honest and genuine and really does care about peace and people. Trouble is in the real world the wolves are always waiting and no nation will stay free if it cannot defenced itself, I genuinely don’t think he understands that, which is why although I think Boris is an incompetent, verbose and a pseudologist, he was a better choice than Corbin.

Tommo
Tommo
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

As I would say ” the lesser of two weevils ” they are all insects that seem too nibble at this countries moral fibres

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

We had to big a pause in construction to have more than 7 now. Hopefully when the new SSBNs are finished we could have a few more. But looking at it our very best construction speed is around 9 years a boat with 3 building so we are not really getting beyond a drumbeat of 1 nuclear boat every 3 years if they last 35-36 years that 12 boats max or 4 SSBNs and 8 SSNs so we may stretch an extra boat in the next build cycle but that would be our lot. There many actually be some value… Read more »

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

I agree we should have a SSK/SSN mix of attack subs to push the numbers up.

JohnH
JohnH
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

You are quite correct. Nuclear powered boats are required for the longer patrols around the world.
However, for local patrols around the UK where submerged endurance is not required, but where the potentially better noise signature of an SSK would come in handy, we should have a diesel electric or similarly powered fleet available

Marked
Marked
1 month ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

All too true. What we have might be good but it’s spread so thin its debatable whether it’s much use having it at all.

Replacements in building or planned are no bloody use if the shit hits the fan now or in the near future. And that shit is a damn sight closer to the fan than it’s been in decades.

Last edited 1 month ago by Marked
Bob
Bob
1 month ago
Reply to  Marked

The “Best ship killer is an SSN” brigade forget that it is also the best platform for killing other subs, obtaining covert intelligence, infiltrating marine SF teams…. Talk about over-stretched!

Marked
Marked
1 month ago
Reply to  Bob

Yeah, they use the sorry excuse every time to cover the airforce and surface fleets zero anti ship capability, don’t worry a sub can do it.

Yeah? One of the 2 or 3 available that’s protecting the trident, gathering intel anywhere on the globe, supporting special forces, escorting the carrier, patrolling the route Russian subs take into the Atlantic, firing cruise missiles (another lack of ability for the surface fleet.

These subs must be good if they can each be in 3 places simultaneously!

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Bob

The best platform for killing a sub is a Merlin, the sub cannot shoot back and its only hope is to evade contact which means it not doing what it needed to. At present Russia has changed how it operates is SSN fleet. They are all being refitted with long range Missiles and will likely sit in the high north in protected seas and not come out to play only to fire missiles. We do have overstretch at present but we will be up to 7 again and these will all be new boats. As for anti ship platforms we… Read more »

Bob
Bob
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Not much our ships can do about submarines staying “Up North”, we need a sub for that.
I don’t give much for our chances of sinking a Russian warship with gunfire when they will have to brave an onslaught of anti-ship missiles just to get in range.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Bob

A hail of useless missiles none of which are as sophisticated as a Harpoon?

If you look at the tech difference on the battlefield and extrapolate that to the naval theatre and then look at the sinking of the Russian cruiser/flagship…

It is one thing popping off cruise missiles against civilian centres and another attacking military targets with AAW defences. Why do you think the Russians fire their cruise missiles at unimportant and in defended locations?

Marked
Marked
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Gunfire v missiles? That’s comic gold. You must work for the mod.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Marked

Is it, what’s the range a ship can actually get a kill chain. Set up….. it’s going to likely be at relatively close range as the Radar horizon for most ships will be around 17-20 miles. Even if they are broadcasting and if the are in a war zone they will not be generally be so finding another ship if very very difficult. A five inch navel gun has an effective range of 20NM which is beyond your radar horizon. it fires a shell at 720ms or 1600miles an hour…faster than any western Anti ship missile, it fires 20 round… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Jonathan
Robert Blay.
Robert Blay.
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

The amount of people on this site that just cannot get their heads around the kill chain concept of finding, tracking, and engaging and radar/horizon limitations beggers belief.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Yes it’s almost as if in their hearts they really believe the earth is flat and cannot quite get their heads around the fact that if it’s below the horizon you can’t see it and therefore can’t kill it no matter what the range of your missiles.

What I find interesting is this belief that the navy with Arguably the most combat experience of any modern navy does not know what’s import or what’s not and if it thought for an instant heavyweight anti ship missiles on escorts was a Must have they would not immediately get an interim solution.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

Yes, exactly mate. Who would ever think the RN knows what it’s talking about. And it isn’t about the money. As you say, if surface vessel heavy weight anti ship missiles was an absolute must have bit of kit, we would simply spend less on something else to get them. Yes, other Navy’s have them, other Navy’s also haven’t fired any at anyone with success or have the range of capabilities we have. id spend the money on putting TLAM on escorts instead.

Meirion X
Meirion X
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

I think, they believe the Earth is flat🤣

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

God job NATO has plenty of SSN’s. It isn’t the RN submarine service v the rest of the world. How many operational boats do you think the Russians have? not many.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

But Robert its not Russia necessarily we should be worried about. Yes Putin is a homicidal maniac and unhinged but his forces are spent. The war in Ukraine has demonstrated that Russia’s military are essentially useless. Sure there is a nuclear and cruise missile threat but the real danger is China. The RN should be getting match fit and ready to contribute as a coallition of democratic states to face the inevitable expansionistic tendency of President Xi when he deems China’s moment has come. Scrapping SSNs and reducing the RN frontline strength now is a terrible idea. Lets scrap Ajax… Read more »

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

The RN is match fit and always has been. We operate as part of NATO,and as recent global deployments have demonstrated, the RN has global support and reach few can match. We always want more, and the recent drop in SSN’s is necessary to prepare for more Astutes and putting the money towards new kit instead keeping the old going. Astute is genuinely world class, and even just 2-3 boats would keep most Navy’s in port.

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

With numbers so small Robert, thank god Astute is so very capable.

As you say, the threat of a single Astute
‘out there’ is enough to make most Navies sweat, it’s one of the finest SSN’s on the planet, with the finest crew, it’s enormous war load of 38 Spearfish 2 will be enough to gut most opponents.

A single Astute among the Chinese fleet in the Pacific, would cause enormous damage, all on its own.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

Astute has some overwhelming capabilities. And working alongside side our partners, especially the US Navy submarine force with decades of experience, and interoperability they could take on any threat across the globe, including China, that has zero combat experience.

Nigel Collins
Nigel Collins
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

And they just keep on building.

China’s New Submarine Is Unlike Anything In Western Navies

The U.S. Navy only operates nuclear-powered submarines. China meanwhile never stopped operating conventional submarines even though they are less capable. This has advantages and disadvantages. But a new submarine pushes this difference further. It is much smaller than those used by other leading navies.

https://www.navalnews.com/naval-news/2022/02/chinas-new-submarine-is-unlike-any-fielded-by-western-navies/

People’s Liberation Army Navy Submarine Force

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/People%27s_Liberation_Army_Navy_Submarine_Force

Last edited 1 month ago by Nigel Collins
Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

I agree with you Mr Bell. When you look through various political and military publications, you can see that a Chinese naval base in Equatorial Guineais a fait accompli. The Chinese also have eyes on a further eight potential ports on Africa’s west coast and two in South America. Worryingly, analysts are talking of one under construction at Port Belgrano, Argentina. A major fishing port, capable of being a temporary home for up to 500 Chinese boats has already been completed in Montevideo. They have invested $78bn in the Argentina, securing 2/5 of it’s meat and cereal production. China is… Read more »

JohnG
JohnG
1 month ago
Reply to  Ianbuk

Glad others are aware of the huge risk China currently poses. I have to add, it’s not just military pressure but also societal. At every level of Chinese culture they are on a war footing with the west, and have been for years. It amazes me the Naivety western governments have had towards this threat. Although we will be working with the yanks and others, I do think it important that we can stand up to China on our own to a certain degree. That’s one of the observations from Ukraine. Currently I do not believe that we are able… Read more »

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  JohnG

Dont worry the UK foreign aid budget funds anti smoking campaigns in China, that is surely enough to alter the attitude of Chinese citizens towards the west!

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

I think the wests response to the Ukraine conflict will be making China think very carefully about any advances on Taiwan. As Russia has demonstrated exactly how NOT to invade a neighbouring country. The US Navy single handedly could wipe out Chinese submarines. As they have about as much combat experience as a Russia conscription soldier pulled off the street.

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

Quite.

But more would be good.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay.

Surely add in the SSKs too?

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

I don’t see the need for SSK’s. Another expense project we don’t have the money for. If the money was available (and the manning) better to build another couple of Astutes.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Robert Blay

Robert, plenty of other navies operate SSKs (often with Air Independent Propulsion). The point is that you can buy a lot more of them than nuclear-powered Astute SSNs.

I do see the need for more attack subs and SSKs are better VfM; their disadvantages are not so great.

Robert Blay
Robert Blay
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Yes, but SSK’s are not ideal for the RN’s global operations. With a vastly larger defence budget then maybe, but even the RN would probably rather just have more nuclear boat’s.

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  Spyinthesky

Stop panicking. If you’d not been asleep for the last 20 years you’d know that there is a replacement for these, it’s called the Astute programme 🤦🏻‍♂️

Bob
Bob
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

The why do we not have seven in service?

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  Bob

Because the last Astute’s are being built at the moment. They encountered issues early on in the programme, partly with it being such a gap since the previous submarines resulting in skill loss and in the introduction of CAD. In the end they had to bring in a PM from Electric Boat in the USA. But the upside is that the Dreadnought programme follows straight afterwards so there won’t be a gap in submarine building and so no skill loss this time. The existing Trafalgar class boats are retired because safety standards dictate they have a finite life. While the… Read more »

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Sean

A pm… ‘A’ as in one? There were circa 50 reported in the local news.

7 is too few, however, sfa can be done about it.

Sean
Sean
1 month ago
Reply to  David Barry

Actually the yank from Electric Boat ended up being the Astute Programme Director. But I can easily imagine there being 50 project-managers given the complexity involved.

I’d agree 7 is too few, but there’s no opportunity to build more as the Dreadnought programme is going to occupy all build capacity for the next few years. Thankfully design for the Astute successor is already starting to begin, so that will probably start once all the Dreadnoughts are built.

donald_of_tokyo
donald_of_tokyo
1 month ago

May be RN only has 6-sets of SSN crew, so that their crew was now handling HMS Anson? 6-set of crew for a fleet of 7 SSN, ITSELF, is “understandable”, although I agree need 7-sets.

Last edited 1 month ago by donald_of_tokyo
Stu
Stu
1 month ago

Need 12 imo.
If you’re right though, we can’t scrape together another 98 submariners?? If that’s true, I may go take a bath with my toaster as there really is no hope. 🤦🏻‍♂️

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Don’t do that stu…have sone toast instead it will all seem better with some hot buttered toast and tea.

Stu
Stu
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

😊 everything always seems better with hot buttered toast and a cup of tea.

David Flandry
David Flandry
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Used to have 12 SSNs. Then some bean counters said 10 were enough, then later another said no, we’ve determined 8 were enough….

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  David Flandry

Considering a Trafalger would cost circa 475 million in todays money and the astutes are coming in at around a billion its no wonder the bean counters have it the way it is.

Simple reality is we dont have the money to replace like for like numbers.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  David Flandry

Used to have 28 attack subs in 1982!

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago

HMS Anson will already have at least 90% of its crew onboard if not all of them. She isn’t far from being commissioned, I suspect will join the fleet within the next year or less. The final two SMs will be at roughly 40% and 20% of their manning, will be mostly engineers. The rest of the crew won’t join untill the last 18 months of the build, so it’s not a lack of manpower. Talent is over 32 years old, I imagine that it was her ‘core life’ or rather lack of it that prompted the MOD to retire… Read more »

donald_of_tokyo
donald_of_tokyo
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Thanks. These two SSNs (HMS Talent and Trenchant) have been NOT active since early 2021. So, if your “the last 18month” is valid (reasonable, I agree), I think at least one of the crew team is now forming the core of that of HMS Anson.

But another one, where have they gone? If they are redundant now, its good news because it means RN has 7-sets of SSN crew team. 5 active, 1 on Anson in trial, and 1 more.

Last edited 1 month ago by donald_of_tokyo
Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago

Hi Donald, it doesn’t quite work like that with SMs, like I said Anson will already be almost fully crewed. Trenchant and Talent might not have been active since last year, but will have retained most of their crew regardless – for safety reasons. They most likely will have lost some, perhaps 15-20% of the crew, but the majority still remain, and will do for a few months yet, as the manpower is still needed for all manner of activities until they get moved and settled into 5 basin, where the systems deactivation starts. As the crew slowly starts to… Read more »

donald_of_tokyo
donald_of_tokyo
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Thanks. As HMS Talent’s commanding officer has been Lt Cdr for some period, I though her crew level has been kept very low for a while.

Anyway, I understand it is not a crew team, but the total number of crew shall be shared among SSN/SSBN fleets. Two more Astutes (in addition to Anson) are coming within 2-3 years. An equivalent crew number of one of them will be provided by disbanding HMS Triumph, but from where the 2nd one can be provided… Not sure. Let’s hope after all Astute be commissioned, RN are manning/operating all 7 SSNs.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

Spot on.

It is very dangerous when things break x00m down……

RN, rightly, doesn’t want a repeat of the Argentinian subs demise….

John Pattullo
John Pattullo
1 month ago

wonder if these will go to Australia as a temporary solution until new subs can be built for them?

David Reardon
David Reardon
1 month ago
Reply to  John Pattullo

Unlikely they have been expensive and time consuming to keep running sad as it is their time has gone past

Stu
Stu
1 month ago
Reply to  John Pattullo

Doubt it. The hulls are at the end of their lives from what I’ve read.

David A
David A
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Is there a limitation for pressurisation cycles?

Stu
Stu
1 month ago
Reply to  David A

I’m by no means an expert, just relaying info, but I’ve read on Navy Lookout that apparently they do. Not sure if it’s the actual hull or the pipe-work inside the boat.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Both I should imagine as there is no point in having a super strong hull if critical pipes break and endanger the boat. The design engineers have to balance the subs displacement against dive strength and fatigue life – this is true of any seriously stressed structure. Hence aircraft and subs, for example, will have a ‘life expectency’ and you go beyond that only at great expense (re-lifing) or you take a serious gamble with safety. I suspect that the early decommissioning is either because someone highlighted the number of dive cycles had hit the limits or perhaps ‘donald_of_toyko’ above… Read more »

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

Is there a role for them training Australian crews?

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

Probably better with a simulator. The Royal Navy don’t use any old subs for training.
You wouldn’t teach someone how to operate machinery on 30 year old tech

Last edited 1 month ago by Monkey spanker
Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Reactor core life and system vulnerability are far bigger issues with SMs of this age (32 yo). It’s v expensive to keep these older SMs running. There are enormous safety issues that need to be resolved for them to keep going, sometimes it’s just not cost effective I’m afraid.

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  David A

Yes as diving brutal on the steel, all the compression then expansion. I understand the pressure hull will weaken after a time.

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago
Reply to  Jonathan

I have to get my Scuba tanks changed every so often and they’ve never been deeper than 109m, so I would imagine a sub would have severe metal fatigue.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Ianbuk

I imagine your Scuba tanks aren’t made of the same quality steel or have the thickness of the steel used in the construction of SM pressure hulls!!!
Metal fatigue is lower down the list of issues which effectively retire our older SMs. It’s normally core life- or lack of it and system ware and tear due to age which are the prime drivers for this.

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

I was using the steel & aluminium determination as a practical point of metal fatigue in something far less important.

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Ianbuk

Yes mate, my first sentence was a bit tongue in cheek by way of a reply, wasn’t meant to offend.

Supportive Bloke
Supportive Bloke
1 month ago
Reply to  David A

Yes, they do have a fatigue life cycle.

Try getting an empty coke can and crushing and straightening it out: sooner or later you get a split in the can. OK it is not quite the same, because you are not creating the metal but stressing the welds.

This is why it is so important the welds are indistinguishable from the metal.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  John Pattullo

No chance anyone else would get them. They are all used up. Knackered.

Andrew
Andrew
1 month ago

High quality I’m sure but in such low numbers. We really need a second manufacturing site so we can build more Astute class boats whilst Dreadnought is under construction. Followed by more emphasis in our education sector on practical skills and military recruitment.

Andy a
Andy a
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew

Never gunna happen at that price but 9 would be perfect

Stu
Stu
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew

2nd manufacturing base isn’t needed. Look how long they take (6-7 years!) when USN bang out a Virginia class in 2-3. They only have 2 facilities themselves. Inefficiency or deliberately slowed to “save money” or “secure jobs”? If you look for it, you can find photos of 3 in build at once in the hall. We’re just slow.
Agree with your assessment on education though. This is what happens when we listen to the “experts” from universities telling us ‘everyone should go to university’.

Last edited 1 month ago by Stu
BobA
BobA
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Actually Stu, the experts in universities were screaming that only 10% of people should go to university otherwise you’d dilute both universities and the technical trades. However, the Blair government decided that university education levels were a good metric of advanced societies – so set a target of 50%.

Stu
Stu
1 month ago
Reply to  BobA

Really!?! Well thank you for the info. Must have heard it from the USA.
I’ll add it to the long list of crappy decision Blair inflicted upon us.

ChariotRider
ChariotRider
1 month ago
Reply to  BobA

True enough. I did an apprenticeship then went to uni, the practical skills are so useful in life… Apprenticeships are grossly under rated.

Cheers CR

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago
Reply to  ChariotRider

True, at least 50% on my law degree had issues with basic English & common sense. Around 30% had dropped out by the end of year 1.

JohninMK
JohninMK
1 month ago
Reply to  BobA

Another advantage to the Government was that it was a one shot hit that kept school leavers, who might have become unemployed, in further education for a few years. The unemployment figures being politically sensitive at that time. Then the scheme further reduced Government costs by making the students pay.

Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  JohninMK

Is the collar chafing yet johnskie? Any condemnation of Putins illegal invasion of Ukraine yet?

Andrew
Andrew
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Well, if we could make the existing site larger so we can manufacture more on one site then that will be fine. But looking at Google maps I don’t think the Barrow site can be expanded in any significant way. And it wouldn’t surprise me if construction was slow to save £ in the short term. There is also the argument we had a skills gap before we started on Astute and so construction was slow due to re-learning skills. I suppose my basic point is we don’t have enough, but we can’t build more with interfering with Dreadnought, so… Read more »

Stu
Stu
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew

They can build 3 at once (see pic) & one in the fitting out basin. The Devonshire dock hall is 6 acres. It’s massive! It can be seen from 20 miles away. That’s only part of the facilities as elsewhere on site they construct individual sections too. Astute took 6 years and Ambush 8. They’ve been continuously in production for 21 years. Think the skills gap should’ve been closed by now. I agree, we don’t have enough. Disagree we can’t make them quicker. Look at Virginia build times (from laying down to launch & commission). Looks to me that we… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Stu
Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

That’s only two. The third is only a piece waiting for the space to be made available. They can house the blocks for multiples at a time, but only have the space to assemble two in the hall – just like the hall constructed for Type 31. I bet they could just cram three in, but it would severely compromise access and construction activities. The space in the middle of the shed is used for lining the submarines up with the door to the basin. They move a completed hull into the space, move the sections of the next hull… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Lusty
Stu
Stu
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Fair one. Makes sense & I’ll assume it’s correct.
I’ll stand by my assertion that we choose to build slow. If we can still build 2 at once, we could take 3 yr each and be launching a new SSN every 18 months (not suggesting we should). Yet we take 3 x as long as a Virginia.

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

That’s a good point. It’s the same for many projects, sadly. They yards could crank them out faster, but we would rather save a penny to spend a pound. The slow build proves advantageous in preserving skills, but proves a hinderance when we see the assets they’re meant to be replacing decommissioned without an immediate replacement ready, or money thrown into keeping older things going for them to be decommissioned at a later date anyway (see the Type 23s and Trafalgar class for examples of that!). Ideally, we would see the old asset decommissioned and replacement commissioned on the same… Read more »

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

We launched and commissioned the T- boats at roughly 18-24 month intervals, so yes the remaining 3 Astute’s could be pushed out quicker given the right amount of technical manpower to finish the job. As you know that will only create issues further along the line- boom and bust all over again!
I do however think that we now have the opportunity to slowly increase the build rate from Dreadnought onwards, cutting the time down to one unit per 2-3 years perhaps. Not our decision of course, so probably wont happen!!! 😂

Stu
Stu
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

😆 Annoyingly, as Lusty points out above, we save a penny to spend a pound: if we committed to 12 x SSN + 4 x SSBN (a not ridiculous number), that’s 16 total, build one every 2 years = 32 years of build… that’s about the lifecycle of a sub. So you finish #16, start on replacing #1. Same with surface ships, commit to 28 or 30 escorts, 30 year life, new one every year please. I’ll bet a pint that if we commit to that, the price per unit would fall to a point where we might sell them… Read more »

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Totally agree with you there, 12/4 mix is arguably the correct number of SMs that we need for all our tasking, while somewhere between 25-30 escorts seems to hit our requirement sweet spot so to speak. We have been kicking the procurement can down the road for several decades now, resulting in the mess that we are now in, from a SSN perspective the situation wont be getting better any time soon. In fact unless we speed up production at Barrow, we will once again be in the same position when SSN(R) arrives. SSN(R) 1st of class isn’t currently due… Read more »

Tim
Tim
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Yes. And do the recycling work here in the UK as well. Have a permanent production line for just one size of vessel per yard. It will be much harder for someone in the future to reduce the fleet by closing a yard because that will remove capability for an entire vessel size.

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Deep32

You can put money on it not happening!!

Tim
Tim
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

I think we should. Build 4 boats in 6 years, then do some recycling for 3 years and repeat. After 27 years we’ll have 12 boats, each with a 27 year life.

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

Except, many trades went to BNFL… A relative did the wiring on the Trident missile tubes – went up North for a 6 figure salary.

The business parks in Ulverston are awash with engineers.

Difficult time re employment.

David Barry
David Barry
1 month ago
Reply to  Stu

When I walked around DDH, 4 were in build.

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 month ago

Just in time 😕

maurice10
maurice10
1 month ago

It’s not as if the World is in crisis at the moment, so what the heck, decommission two subs in one day why don’t you. I know these old girls are held together with string and masking tape but the timing is unfortunate. At this moment, the UK must maintain its military assets until such time the Ukrainian war stabilises and the Russian threat is fully recognised and contained and we ain’t there yet.

Marked
Marked
1 month ago

Awesome. More kit retired before it’s replacement is ready.

Bob
Bob
1 month ago

It beggars belief how little kit we field from one of the worlds largest defence budgets.

Amin
Amin
1 month ago
Reply to  Bob

This is because of the high value of your national currency.

Steven Alfred Rake
Steven Alfred Rake
1 month ago

What was once the UK’s pride and Joy the Royal Navy has been reduced to a joke by are political elite with just 5 SSNs but only 2 or 3 available due to shortage of crew, 2 state of the art Aircraft Carriers but no aircraft. Air defence Destroyers that brakes down as soon as you put your foot down for a turn of speed. the rest of the fleet being retired at an ever increasing rate with replacements 10 years away if at all.

Esteban
Esteban
1 month ago

UK actually only has four operational submarines the fifth one is at least a year away from being operational.

James
James
1 month ago

The aircraft carriers do have available aircraft and a T45 made a full deployment with the aircraft carriers last year.

If we demand top end kit it comes with a huge price tag, the budget does not exist to keep the numbers as we once had them.

Steven Alfred Rake
Steven Alfred Rake
1 month ago
Reply to  James

Yes we have aircraft just not enough to put one carrier to sea with a full compliment let alone 2, of the 2 T45s deployed last year only 1 compleated the deployment the other spent 3/4 of the deployment alongside being repaired and out of 6 T45s 4 have spent more time along side than at sea. The UK has the 4th largest defence budget in the world but it dose not equate to the 4th largest defence department, what it dose equate to is the largest misappropriated and misused defence spending in the world with funding disappearing into black… Read more »

James
James
1 month ago

Sadly the budget has to pay for the Trident program which consumes a huge amount to keep that going. Dont disagree that the money should be better spent, ive said for years those who are responsible for spending it should be accountable like in the private sector. The aircraft and carrier debate can go on forever, we have done the right thing and not bought early block F35’s to then waste an unknown sum later having to upgrade the aircraft so I will disagree with the status of the carriers. We only ever planned to have 1 fully capable carrier… Read more »

Steven Alfred Rake
Steven Alfred Rake
1 month ago
Reply to  James

The SSBN/Trident should in reality have its own budget as it is a stand alone project under the nuclear deterrent programme. We already had a good understanding of the costs of the F35’s before the Carriers came into service and the government has stated on a number of occasions that they want to run both carriers at the same time. So to compensate for the lack of F35s available they have a number of choices 1. get the RAF the cheaper version of F35A’s and have the F35B’s dedicated to the FAA. or 2. get the “loyal wingman” concept up… Read more »

James
James
1 month ago

Osprey isnt going to happen, its horrendously expensive to operate and has been beset with problems since its inception, im sure alot of those issues are sorted but is no guarantee that they are all fixed. F35A is also probably in the pipe dream/fantasy fleet section im afraid with Tempest development, latest Tranche Typhoon would be a much more sensible option. Correct the carriers got built and reasonably on time aswell, however the F35 program got beset with delays. Yes they will have the ability to operate both but as has been widely discussed POW is going more down a… Read more »

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  James

If money was available for osprey COD I would prefer the money got spent on RFA ships. Argus is going out of service, repair ship not replaced etc etc

Stc
Stc
1 month ago

Here’s one from the “left field” Do these subs with the leaking toilets etc not have at least 6 months life left in them ? How long would be take to train 200 or so Ukrainians to use them even if armed with old fashion torpedoes. Might put the wind up that ,Russian black sea fleet ? And if the Russians sink them we will not have to worry about decommissioning ! Could you imagine the outcry in the woke media, if a British city was told sorry we are closing down the main hospital so you cannot get sick… Read more »

Jonathan
Jonathan
1 month ago
Reply to  Stc

Well I would imagine the timeframe for most of the senoir officers and rates would take years of training and experience if not decades for some. As for your nuclear engineers well…….

your not training the crew of a nuclear powered submarine in 6 months, they are after all some of the most complex machines built by man.

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago
Reply to  Stc

They wouldn’t be able to get to the Black Sea. The Montreux Convention prohibits the transit of warships and submarines if, as in the Russian invasion of Ukraine, any one member is involved in a war. The Turks classified Russia’s invasion as a ‘war’ at the end of February. This stopped any transit of the Bosphorus straits by any warship or submarine in line with the 1934 convention.

Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago
Reply to  Ianbuk

But Ukraine isnt at war, technically they are conducting a special defensive operation.😁

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Turkey classified it as a war on 28th February. This allowed them to close the Bosphorus to military traffic from Ukraine and Russia.

JohninMK
JohninMK
1 month ago
Reply to  Ianbuk

Its closed to all military traffic apart from Turkey’s own. But strangely Russian merchant ships are still allowed through carrying shipments to and from Syria as well as arms exports.

Last edited 1 month ago by JohninMK
Airborne
Airborne
1 month ago
Reply to  JohninMK

Collar and lead, collar and lead! Putins lap dog! And, many of us are still asking, any condemnation of Putins illegal invasion of Ukraine? No balls call every time you ignore it!

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Airborne

Haha, he missed the memo on read the room and adjust comments accordingly. He’s like a neo nazi that goes into a synagogue and starts telling them how great hitler was🙈

Stc
Stc
1 month ago
Reply to  Ianbuk

See comment by Ianbuk. I do not know if this is correct. But I will give you a history lesson. Many military historians will say that in 1939 the German army was smaller than the French/British army but was better equipped. But what enabled the Germans to break through was the British respected Belgiums neutrality, but the Germans did not. Had we not got that army back we would have probably been finished. In modern warfare there is two rules only to obey, with modern weapons you target the military only and you treat prisoners the way you would wish… Read more »

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago
Reply to  Stc

Stc, thanks, I don’t need a history lesson. I had a great deal of time to examine the causes and response in the events leading up to the Dunkirk evacuation on my staff course.

Anyway, you doubted my report on
Turkey closing the Bosphorus Straight to military vessels.

Here: https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/turkey-implement-international-pact-access-shipping-straits-due-ukraine-war-2022-02-27/

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  Stc

Other than the tank tactics and some of the tank designs themselves the majority of the German army still relied on Horse’s for logistics.

They had some advantages in equipment but also still relied on some very old tech solutions at the same time!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  James

Spot on. The German infantry division was horse drawn for most of the wrong and made up the bulk of the Wermacht.

Their strengths were blitzkrieg, their commanders, drugged up troops, and the 88.

At the start if the war their PZ1s, 2s were tiny with their 38Ts. It was the tactics that set them apart.

Later in the war, some of the equipment was superb.

Bob
Bob
1 month ago

Can any of the people with inside knowledge answer a question please?

If given sufficient funding and skilled manpower, is there the physical space at Babcock’s current facility to build additional Astute’s while meeting the Dreadnought requirements?

Shelley
Shelley
1 month ago
Reply to  Bob

I have no inside knowledge. As an outsider, I would say this seems like a crazy idea. The investment that has gone into the Barrow facility is huge, not just DDH but its contents, all that cutting edge technology and the superskilled operatives. Difficult and very costly to replicate. Pointless. The Astute build-rate is not set by the builders; it’s set by HMG on the grounds of stringing out the cost to the Treasury whilst appearing to maintain a drumbeat. I bet BAE could knock one out every 2 – 3 years if asked. It’s a mature design now, and… Read more »

Bob
Bob
1 month ago
Reply to  Shelley

It was not an idea, it was a simple question. Is there sufficient space in the current facility to build additional Astute class boats alongside the Dreadnoughts?

{Edit} Ah, I see why you were confused! My bad, I meant Barrow not Babcock’s 🙄

Last edited 1 month ago by Bob
Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago
Reply to  Shelley

I think its doable. 2 dreadnoughts in build at a time alongside an astute class. We could get the numbers back upto 9 SSNs again that way.

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago

Any truth in the rumour they are being hooked up to the national grid?

Dave Wolfy
Dave Wolfy
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul.P

There is now.

Paul.P
Paul.P
1 month ago
Reply to  Dave Wolfy

😉

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  Dave Wolfy

Hahaha.

Frank62
Frank62
1 month ago

Build a few SSKs to provide cover when so few SSNs are available.

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago
Reply to  Frank62

Couldn’t agree more. Leave the SSN’ number as planned, build 6-8 SSK’s for green water operation. The RN had one of, if not the best SSK’s in the Oberon class.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  Ianbuk

Adding avnew SSK classic would be nice but likely costs, crewing, infrastructure for this could be problematic. If affordable maybe two more Astutes, especially if Australia chooses this design and wants construction to start as soon as. And a few more P-8s would be handy.

Quentin D63
Quentin D63
1 month ago
Reply to  Quentin D63

*classic… class

JJ Smallpiece
JJ Smallpiece
1 month ago

Only another 10 SSNs required to give the RN a credible submarine force

Andrew
Andrew
1 month ago
Reply to  JJ Smallpiece

Why does the Royal Navy need 17 SSN’s? I think the most we ever had was about 12..

After a quick google search, it appears that Russia has 17SSN’s (unsure of their actual state of readiness) divided between all its fleets.

the Uk has or will have 7, the French 6 giving 13 SSN’s from the European side, with somewhere in the low 50’s from the USA…. The USA is trying to increase its SSN numbers in the longterm, so another one or two would be nice for the Royal Navy,

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Andrew

Why does the Royal Navy need 17 SSN’s? I think the most we ever had was about 12..”

It had around that number in the Cold war.
Blair’s 1997/8 SDSR cut from 12 to 10.

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago

Hey Bud – might have been a few more operational in the late 80’s

Valiant/Churchill class. 5
Swiftsure class: 6
Trafalgar class: 6 ( +1 in build)
Not to mention a healthy number of Oberon class Diesels (about 10?)

As for Blair, don’t get me started. As if 1997/98 wasn’t enough, he managed to surpass himself again with the 2003 cuts. Cameron can all also shoulder his share of the blame.

Hope your pima summer weather is shaping up better than our crappy Auckland weather today!

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Hi K mate.

Yes, in the teens easily with SSN alone.

That number seems unaffordable now unless we got rid of surface fleet, but 10 to 12 is the number needed to enable the RN to properly carry out it’s commitments with a sensible margin.

It is!!! I’m night turn at the moment so in my fav place in the hot Surrey sun, my garden.

Take care my friend.

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago

Enjoy the sun Mate! 😀

dan
dan
1 month ago

The Brits need more subs and ones that can carry more land attack missiles. The current subs only really carry a small token of TLAMs leaving the heavy lifting to the USN and their subs.

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago
Reply to  dan

The USA like doing the heavy lifting. That’s why obesity is so popular there

RonH
RonH
1 month ago
Reply to  Monkey spanker

Yeah, because UK is full of skinny folks…

https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/sn03336/

Pot meet kettle.

Bob
Bob
1 month ago
Reply to  dan

Carrying out TLAM attacks does not appear to me to be the best way in which the Royal Navy can support the USN. The USN has many options, both surface and undersea, to undertake such strikes.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  dan

Isn’t it inevitable that a sub from the superpower has more punch?

Monkey spanker
Monkey spanker
1 month ago

This has been a long time coming. We all saw the reduction in forces peace by piece for 30 years. When I was a youngster astute was getting ready and I stupidly thought it was a replacement for the swifture class(remember them!) and another new sub would replace trafalgar class. The forces are half the size they were as the government spend half the amount of gdp over compared to 40 years ago. It’s the short term saving over long term loss that’s really hitting now. Saved £10m pushing back this and that project, costs £200m over next 10 years… Read more »

criss whicker
criss whicker
1 month ago

surely we need more not less,
it still sees the royal navy is shrinking rather than growing.??

Ianbuk
Ianbuk
1 month ago

Deleted as the question was asked by John Pattullo

Last edited 1 month ago by Ianbuk
Steve
Steve
1 month ago

What terrible timing. Surely they could have delayed this by a year or two and seen what happened with Ukraine. Russia is annoyed with us for supplying weapons to Ukraine and is threatening to retaliate. For sure they can’t do a conventional miltiary action against us, but they can puts subs into the channel etc to threaten us. Just seems sensible to wait the dust settles a bit before cutting any capability.

Last edited 1 month ago by Steve
Mr Bell
Mr Bell
1 month ago

What a joke. 5 SSNs left in service. The Tory cuts cuts cuts keep on coming. Meanwhile China is adding to their fleet at a rate equivalent to the entire RN being built in approximately every 2 years. We need to be awake to this reality not asleep at the wheel allowing cuts like this. I know I know astute class in build etc but they arent actually in service yet so not matter how anyone on this site replies this is a cut, albeit temporary. At a time when defence committee and RN themselves admit 7 SSNs isnt enough… Read more »

Deep32
Deep32
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Talent decommissioning early before Anson came into service wasn’t part of the plan. Unfortunately with such old hulls, Talent is 32 yo, things don’t always go to plan. This is what happens when you don’t have enough assets to start with, we will be playing catch up until both Anson and Triumph are in service, with the remaining 4 having to take up the slack and they will be run hard.

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  Mr Bell

Are you implying Labour increased the size of military in the last 20 years?

Ukvoter
Ukvoter
1 month ago

I really, really hope our politicians see the light and boost the defence budget to 3% GDP. We have entered a new cold war and need to accept the fact. Security is the first duty of govt. Everything else is secondary. We cannot defend ourselves properly in this new age. I would love to see us form a formal CANZUK group to boost security. This would be the best way to face China in the future who have already started threatening Australia, and are working on dismantling the commonwealth and our overseas territories. Their support for Argentina over the Falklands… Read more »

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  Ukvoter

With the cost of borrowing going up, inflation the way it is and the real possibility of recession sadly I doubt it will happen.

Paul42
Paul42
1 month ago

A sad reflection on the current state of the Royal Navy. Seriously weakened over many years with long delays in procurement resulting in capability gaps and lack of investment in numbers and offensive equipment on vessels that do finally get built.

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul42

Unfortunately Paul, it’s a vicious circle. 30 years of defence cuts with the RN taking a disproportionate share of the axe, while governments from John Major through to Cameron (the cuts king) felt the RN was larger than was required in the post Cold War period.. So, cuts across the board, coupled with sharply rising costs of high tech complex defence contracts and only ordered in small numbers, all added together, equal a perfect storm! It’s going to take 3% GDP and a serious effort to rebuild the RN ( and our other services) over the next 20 years. Luckily,… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  John Clark

“ through to Cameron (the cuts king) “ Not often I disagree with you on mate, but on RAF/RN/Mod alone, not so much army personnel as Afghan and Iraq wars were on I would suggest the previous rabble in Downing Street were worse ) Labour: 12 SSN to “8” vowed by Hoon. 35 Frigates and Destroyers to 23. RFA numbers cut. 23 Fast Jet Squadrons ( including JFH ) to 12. TWELVE! I still read here often of the “Tory cutting Harriers” when actually 3,4,800,801,899 Sqns and RAF Cottesmore were all cut or closed under Labour. No1 Sqn RAF with GR7’s… Read more »

John Clark
John Clark
1 month ago

Spot on as ever Daniele, absolutely right, They are all bloody useless….

It will require 3% GDP and decades to repair the damage….

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago

DM, A well outlined summary of a very state of affairs.

Your quote :”I would argue the damage was already done and the Tories just finished the job.” = couldn’t agree more

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago

I did some ‘shower time’ thinking last night. From a RN perspective, I would argue the worst cuts in 2010 were: 1). Cutting personnel. It might sound like an ‘easy’ thing to accommodate, but it left us without crews or with significant gaps in understanding and learning. Never underestimate the benefit of training combined with the experience and knowledge of old hands. 2). RFA cuts. Perhaps the most foolish cut in terms of the surface fleet. The loss of Fort George has placed a heavy burden on her surviving sister and made her a single point of failure for the… Read more »

Last edited 1 month ago by Lusty
Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

As usual a more thorough and thought out post adding to my general outline.

What has happened to MROSS mate? And are Echo and Enterprise laid up like I read here?

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago

You always add quality to proceedings! I have no idea what’s happened to MROSS. Scott was extended in service, so I imagine it has slipped. With that said, it was meant to be available by 2024, so there’s still time to potentially procure/build one. I will also note that the plan to have a ‘support ship’ in place for autonomous vessels has also slipped (March 2022 was the plan.. bet it was a typo!) and there have been no further comments. Echo is currently laid up, while Enterprise remains active. This could be due to any number of reasons, including… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli
Daniele Mandelli
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

I didn’t know Scott was extended I’m pleased about that. Considering one if it’s strategic roles it’s nuts getting rid of it.

Agree about E and E, useful assets, which was why I was surprised one was laid up.

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago

As am I. I believe she will soldier on until March 2023. She’s currently in Falmouth, having spent a lot of time in Gibraltar recently.

The survey ships actually contribute money! Madness to cut them.

DMJ
DMJ
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

4) was this not as result of problems at the time with the F35B development programme and it looked possible that variant would be dropped by the US

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  DMJ

Possibly. There was a real worry that the B model wouldn’t be financially viable. I can’t recall all the details, but I’m sure someone can. The other side was that the Tories obviously wanted to appeal to our allies, and cats/traps would have offered an uplift in capability, although there are also constraints. The trouble was that nobody had really planned for it. Yes, the carriers have room for the conversion, but it requires planning. The conversion would have added time and money to the programme. I believe PoW was to be converted first (adapted while in build), meaning that… Read more »

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Meddling!*****
By*****

Give me a fookin’ medal for my typos! Haha.

Last edited 1 month ago by Lusty
Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

Great summary – thanks Lusty. I’m liking your idea around point 3, seems really sensible.

Lusty
Lusty
1 month ago
Reply to  Klonkie

Thanks! It appears it’s coming to fruition now with Type 31/32, but it will still take years to materialise! As for my typos.. stay off the rum, Lusty…

Klonkie
Klonkie
1 month ago
Reply to  Lusty

😄

Marked
Marked
1 month ago
Reply to  Paul42

Even sadder when you consider the navy is in a far better state than the army!

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago

So we have 5 subs in the inventory. Based on the rule of 3, maybe 2 are available for tasking; one of those will be protecting the SSBN bomber, which leaves one to cover the ‘Seven Seas’.

Last edited 1 month ago by Graham Moore
Dalecn
Dalecn
1 month ago
Reply to  Graham Moore

Its been arranged so at least 4 of them are operational until the next sub comes into service.

Graham Moore
Graham Moore
1 month ago
Reply to  Dalecn

I hope this cunning plan works out. Quite a challenge for minimum of 4 out of 5 subs to be guaranteed available at all times.

George Parker
George Parker
1 month ago

The MOD and government are a disgrace. We have so few submarines, at least commision replacements before decommissioning.

DMJ
DMJ
1 month ago
Reply to  George Parker

So you would keep and send to sea submarines that were potentially unsafe? Didn’t work well for the ARA Sam Juan

James
James
1 month ago
Reply to  DMJ

Well exactly, no point sending one out to sink or at best case throwing insane amounts of money at them just to keep them running when the money is badly needed elsewhere.

Replacements arent exactly easy to produce either, exceptionally complex machines which take a long time to build.

FOSTERSMAN
FOSTERSMAN
1 month ago

Surely wait until all the astutes are out? I don’t understand our replacement programs

C.Jones
C.Jones
1 month ago

Great as Putin kicks off we will be left with a tiny navy and a minimal on paper force. Not only that Bo Jo is shutting the last naval base in the U.K facing Russia on the Eastern Seaboard of the U.K, M.O.D Caledonia at Rosyth utter genius. So the Royal Navy only has to travel a few hundred miles more to intercept any Russian ships or have land based back up , accommodation, stores and staff at hand. Anyone would think he’s been taking pointers from Vlad on how to run a Navy?

Mr Barry Stevens
Mr Barry Stevens
1 month ago

There’s probably as many decommissioned nuclear submarines at devonport dockyard as there is at rosyth.

John Williams
John Williams
1 month ago

Two British nuclear submarines decommissioned in one dayCould the two submarines have continued in service longer?
Is the decommissioning a cost saving move?

Nuffniff Barton.
Nuffniff Barton.
1 month ago

Eeeeee don’t time fly my last boat was the just commissioned HMS Sceptre.

David Bridge
David Bridge
1 month ago

Maybe a quick refit and send them to Australia

Sceptical Richard
Sceptical Richard
1 month ago

That means that at best we’ll have three subs on patrol, more likely two on a regular basis. Totally unacceptable. Money squandered on aircraft carriers while we decimate the real teeth of the navy most feared by our enemies. We should have 12 SSNs

Leslie Leveson
Leslie Leveson
1 month ago

Stabilty today instabilty tomorrow as one looks at the world today. Unfortunately the advancement of Rasputins navy has dictated why the Royal Navy needs to uprate the fleet.Whether you disagree with nuclear weaponry or not, it is needed.Should the inevitable should occur God forbid let it never happen, but there is need to hold Previous goverments pruned the services to the bone, as the likes of Russia and China has built up over the years. The Royal Navy is finally going to receive new surface ships and submarines which is long overdue I would like to see more subs built,… Read more »

stevethemanc
stevethemanc
1 month ago

Give the radioactive waste to the Ukraine, I am sure they could drop it off somwhere.

andy reeves
andy reeves
1 month ago

the decomissioning of further nuclear fleet boats to add to the already disturbing numbers of etired submarines,(there will now be over 20 of them), and leaving such a small number in the fleet inventory is awful, more bad news(when is it otherwise)? my son was on torbay when it was retired, and everyone down to the dockyard cat were of the opinion that the boat was good for at least 5 more years service yet again, as happened to the swiftsure class we are left with nothing like good enough number of boats while the fleet waits for the ever… Read more »

Rob N
Rob N
1 month ago

Could these be sold to Australia?