The Ministry of Defence (MoD) today announced the handover of HMS Astute and HMS Ambush to the Royal Navy as the keel for the sixth Astute class submarine was laid.
Phillip Dunne MP, the minister for defence equipment, support and technology, made the announcement at BAE Systems’ site in Barrow-in-Furness to announce the submarines have now been officially handed over to the Royal Navy.
Mr Dunne joined guests from BAE Systems, Royal Navy, MoD and local community for a ceremony at the home of UK nuclear submarine building, where he officially laid the keel for Agamemnon.
He said: “The keel laying of the sixth submarine, Agamemnon, and the handover of HMS Astute and HMS Ambush to the Royal Navy are huge milestones reflecting significant progress in the programme.”
Mr Dunne added that a new contract signed between BAE Systems secure around 5,000 jobs at BAE Systems and thousands more who work in over 400 suppliers across the UK submarine supply chain.”
Today’s ceremony marked the start of the transition from preparation and fabrication to construction for Agamemnon.
It also marked the start of a new contract between the Ministry of Defence and BAE Systems, which will help deliver the Astute class and pave the way for the future Successor nuclear deterrent submarines.
The agreement will also help secure around 5,000 jobs at BAE Systems and thousands more who work in over 400 suppliers across the UK submarine supply chain.
John Hudson, managing director for BAE Systems Maritime – Submarines, said today marked an important milestone for the programme.
“This is a very important milestone for the programme and as we mark the first step in one submarine’s construction, we also acknowledge the importance of HMS Astute and HMS Ambush being handed over to the Royal Navy,” he said.
“These are highly effective submarines, engineered and built to provide the Royal Navy with unrivalled underwater capability. While Agamemnon has some way to go before it joins HMS Astute and HMS Ambush it will one day form part of a formidable class of submarines.
Mr Hudson added: “Signing this contract underlines our commitment to SEPP and recognises our role as the lead contractor for the design and build of submarines for the Royal Navy. At the heart of it is the principle to collaborate with the MoD, Rolls Royce and Babcock in the delivery of this very complex programme.”