New Royal Navy warship HMS Glasgow emerges at Clyde shipyard

The front section of HMS Glasgow - a new class of Royal Navy warship - has been rolled out at a shipyard on the River Clyde.

In a move which lasted 90 minutes, the bow of the vessel was taken out from the build hall at BAE Systems’ Govan yard, where it will be joined by the rear section in the coming weeks.

The ship is the first in a new generation of cutting-edge City Class Type 26 frigates being built for the Royal Navy

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BAE Systems says the programme is supporting more than 4,000 jobs across the UK and is helping with the nation’s economic recovery by maintaining much needed skills and capabilities. To date, more than £1 billion has been invested in the supply chain, with more than 100 suppliers globally.

The bow of HMS Glasgow has been rolled out at a shipyard on the River Clyde. Pic: John Linton
The bow of HMS Glasgow has been rolled out at a shipyard on the River Clyde. Pic: John Linton

Simon Lister, managing director of BAE Systems’ Naval Ships business, said: “The emergence of HMS Glasgow is a very proud moment for everyone involved and is testament to the skills and passion of our workforce.

“We have now completed the construction of all units of the ship and in the coming weeks our skilled teams will bring the hull together for the first time.

“The roll out is a huge milestone for the Type 26 programme. It’s evidence of our solid progress in building the first of a new class and presents an opportunity for us to celebrate the progress being made with our colleagues, our suppliers, our customer and the city of Glasgow.”

The Type 26 frigates - also known as the Global Combat Ship - are designed to partially replace the Navy’s 13 ageing Type 23 warships, with the first set to enter service in the mid-2020s.

It will be joined up with the rear section of the ship in the coming weeks. Pic: John Linton

Their main role will be anti-submarine warfare (ASW), although they are also suitable for a range of operations including air defence.

It was initially anticipated that 13 Type 26 frigates would be built - to directly replace the Type 23 fleet - but, following the 2015 Strategic Defence Review, it was confirmed there would be eight along with five general purpose ships.

Each Type 26 will be equipped with a range of world-class capabilities including the Sea Ceptor missile defence system, a five inch calibre gun, flexible mission bay, Artisan 997 Medium Range Radar, and towed array sonars.

The flight deck will be able to accommodate helicopters up to the size of a Chinook, while the mission bay can quickly adapt to house and deploy vessels, vehicles and containers.

Pat Browning, Type 26 programme team leader in defence equipment and support, said the new frigates will serve at the heart of the Royal Navy's surface fleet “for decades to come.”

Mr Browning described the roll out of HMS Glasgow’s bow as a “landmark moment” for the programme and also commended the hard work and skill of those involved in designing and manufacturing the ship.

While HMS Glasgow moved out into the open air for the first time on Friday, work will continue on the second in class, HMS Cardiff, with construction to start on HMS Belfast later in the year. These are also expected to be built at BAE’s Govan and Scotstoun yards on the Clyde.

Variants of the Type 26 design are also being produced for the Australian and Canadian navies.

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