Dauntless leaves Clyde for last time

Posted on 1 Dec 2009 by The Manufacturer

Dauntless, the second of the Type 45 anti-air warfare destroyers for the Royal Navy, has left the Clyde for the final time.

BAE Systems employees from the Clyde yards gathered at the quayside in the early morning to wave the ship off on her delivery voyage to her home port of Portsmouth.

The occasion marked the culmination of five years of hard work for the employees at the Govan shipyard, who have put their heart and soul into building the state-of-the-art warship for the Royal Navy.

Reflecting the close partnership developed with the Royal Navy during the build and subsequent sea trials of Dauntless, Commanding Officer Captain Richard Powell granted Honorary Membership of the Wardroom to two BAE Systems employees ahead of the ship’s departure.

The exceptional move recognises the service that ship manager David Connelly and operations manager Joe McEwan have given to Dauntless and cements their long-term affiliation with the ship’s crew.

Angus Holt, UK Programmes Director at BAE Systems’ Surface Ships business, said: “This is a fantastic day for our workforce, both on the Clyde and in Portsmouth, who have each played a vital role in creating such a remarkable ship for the Royal Navy.

“I’m proud of the dedication that the team has shown to ensure that Dauntless is built to highest possible standards and of the achievements of David and Joe who have worked tirelessly with the ship’s crew to get us where we are today.”

Commenting on his Honorary Membership, David Connelly said: “It’s a real honour to receive this award from the ship’s Captain. Joe and I have worked on Dauntless since her first steel cut back in 2004 and have an enormous sense of pride in the ship.”

Dauntless set sail under the BAE Systems flag, with a combined crew of BAE Systems and Royal Navy personnel. She will enter her home port of Portsmouth on Wednesday, where she will be handed over to the Royal Navy during a formal ceremony alongside the following day.

BAE Systems signed a £309 million seven year support contract with the Ministry of Defence earlier this year in a move that will provide the high quality through life support for the Type 45 fleet that’s essential to ensure that the Royal Navy can continue to deliver the high demands placed upon it around the world.

Once in service, the fleet of six Type 45 destroyers will provide the backbone of the UK’s naval air defences for the next 30 years and beyond.

Each destroyer will be able to engage a large number of targets simultaneously, and defend aircraft carriers or groups of ships, such as an amphibious landing force, against the strongest future threats from the air. The vessels will contribute a specialist air warfare capability to worldwide maritime and joint operations until 2040.