UK Begins Construction on Next-Generation Frigates
On Thursday, UK defense secretary Sir Michael Fallon began the steel cutting for the first in a new generation of frigates for the Royal Navy. The first in the series of Type 26 frigates will be named HMS Glasgow, in honor of the city where the ships will be built.
The work will sustain 1,700 jobs in Scotland for two decades and 4,000 jobs across the wider UK supply chain until 2035. HMS Glasgow will enter service with the Royal Navy in the mid-2020s. The total contract value for the frigates is about $4.8 billion.
“The Clyde was the birthplace of some of the greatest fighting ships the world has ever known, and so cutting steel there today for the future HMS Glasgow is symbolic of a Royal Navy on the rise once again,” said First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Philip Jones. "The name Glasgow brings with it a string of battle honours, stretching from the Arctic Circle to the South Atlantic. As one of the world's most capable anti-submarine frigates, the Type 26 will carry the Royal Navy's tradition of victory far into the future."
There have been eight Royal Navy ships of the name Glasgow since the early 1700s, and between them they have earned ten battle honors. Two served in the world wars, including the Arctic Convoys and the Normandy Landings, and the last ship to bear the name was awarded the Falkland Islands 1982 battle honor – adding to the Falkland Islands honor won by her predecessor in 1914.
The Ministry of Defense hopes that the Type 26 will have strong export opportunities. BAE Systems and the MOD are exploring export options, with interest from international customers including Australia.