News

Just Grampian – work starts on new patrol ship HMS Spey
21 April 2017

Work today began on the fifth and final of the second-generation River-class patrol ships with the first steel cut for HMS Spey.

Tony Douglas, the head of Defence Equipment and Support – the arm of the MOD responsible for procuring new military equipment and looking after it once in service – pressed the button on the laser cutter at BAE’s Govan yard in Glasgow.

From tiny acorns... the first steel is cut at Govan after the head of DE&S, Tony Douglas, set the machine in motion

WORK today began on the fifth and final of the second-generation River-class patrol ships with the first steel cut for HMS Spey.

Tony Douglas, the head of Defence Equipment and Support – the arm of the MOD responsible for procuring new military equipment and looking after it once in service – performed the honours at BAE’s Govan yard and set the steel cutters in motion.

As with the four £120m vessels already at various stages of construction on the Clyde, Spey will perform fishery protection and general duties both in home waters and beyond.

The 1,800-tonne vessel is less a souped-up version of the original River-class, built 15 years ago, and more a souped-up version (29 enhancements) of corvettes built for Brazil, with a large flight deck (capable of taking a Merlin).

The first RN crew are being assigned to Forth ahead of taking her on sea trials later this year; Medway is due to be floated down the Clyde to Scotstoun for fitting out this summer, followed by Trent and Tamar. Spey will be handed over to the Navy at the end of the decade.