Watch as HMS Forth is moved down the River Clyde in Glasgow to be fitted out.
Vice Admiral Simon Lister, Chief of Materiel (Fleet) for the MOD’s Defence Equipment and Support organisation, said:
“The cutting-edge technology of the Royal Navy’s versatile new Offshore Patrol Vessels will enable these warships to carry out a wide range of tasks, from disaster relief missions to maritime security, all the while protecting the UK’s interests at home and around the globe.
Supported by a rising Defence budget, the rollout of HMS Forth reflects the success of the OPV programme, safeguarding the vital capability and skills that will be used in the delivery of the Royal Navy’s Type 26 Frigates.”
Iain Stevenson, Managing Director at BAE Systems Naval Ships, said:
“For FORTH to enter the water less than two years after construction started is hugely significant and sets the tone for the future of modern warship building. She is the first complex warship to benefit from the new technologies and methods that we are introducing to further bolster our ability to be the best supplier to the Royal Navy. FORTH has already benefitted from a safer and more efficient build process that enabled much of the work to take place under cover, and as a result she leaves our Govan facility at a much higher rate of completion.
We’re building on the proud heritage of British shipbuilding here in Glasgow and looking to the future. Not only does this mean we are creating valuable additions to the Royal Navy’s fleet but we are ensuring that shipbuilding skills and expertise are maintained and developed in the UK.”
The manufacturing contract for the first three ships was announced in August 2014 and in the 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review the UK Government announced its intention to buy a further two offshore patrol vessels to be built in Glasgow.
Construction of first of class, HMS Forth, began in October 2014, second of class, HMS Medway, began in June 2015 while HMS Trent began in October 2015. Forth is due to be delivered to the Royal Navy in 2017.