The UK Minister for Defence Procurement, Harriett Baldwin, announced the placing of a contract with BAE Systems on 8 December for two additional RIVER-class Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPV).
HMS TAMAR and SPEY will bring the total class to five and government investment in the programme to £635 million, taking this additional £287 million manufacturing contract into account.
The first vessel, HMS FORTH, entered the water in August, less than two years after construction started, and is now docked at the BAE Systems’ Scotstoun facility, where she will complete final systems installation and testing before being delivered to the Royal Navy in the second half of 2017.
MEDWAY, the second vessel, is scheduled to enter the water in spring 2017 and TRENT, the third, is currently at an advanced stage of assembly at Govan.
Iain Stevenson, Managing Director of BAE Systems Naval Ships, said: “Securing this contract for two further River Class OPVs is testament to the proven capability of the design and the tremendous skill and dedication of employees on the programme. Our investment in the latest digital design technologies and new processes is enabling us to deliver equipment of the highest quality at the lowest possible cost, helping to secure the long-term future of our highly skilled industry in the UK. I am looking forward to seeing both the OPV and Type 26 ships in construction across both our shipyards in Glasgow next year.”