United Kingdom Defense contracts worth more than £2bn have been awarded to BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce to begin the third major phase of the future submarine nuclear deterrent program, Dreadnought. With the overall program supporting around 30,000 jobs across the UK, from design through to build, Delivery Phase 3 (DP3) represents the most significant stage of the Dreadnought program so far.
In 2021 alone, it supported around 13,500 jobs in the Northwest of England and a further 16,300 over the rest of the UK, making a significant contribution to the Government's leveling-up agenda.
The investment is the latest financial commitment between the Ministry of Defense, BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce, and is the initial investment within a planned overall total of nearly £10bn for the whole delivery phase.
DP3 will see the first of four submarines, HMS Dreadnought, exit the Barrow-in-Furness shipyard to begin sea trials, laying the foundation to sustain the Continuous at Sea Deterrence (CASD) for as long as the international security situation makes it necessary.
Defense Procurement Minister, Jeremy Quin, said: “The Dreadnought-class will be crucial to maintaining and safeguarding our national security, with the nuclear deterrent protecting every UK citizen from the most extreme threats, every minute of every day.
“Designed in the UK, built in the UK and supporting tens of thousands of jobs in the UK, the Dreadnought program is a leading example of our commitment to defense manufacturing and will continue to boost British industry for decades to come.”
The Dreadnought program also brings huge benefits to BAE Systems’ Submarines Academy for Skills and Knowledge, based at the Barrow-in-Furness site. Opened in 2018, the academy is currently training more than 1,050 apprentices and graduates, with a further 230 craft apprentices, 110 degree apprentices and 90 graduates set to join this year.
The Dreadnought Class will be one of the most complex machines ever built and it will operate in one of the most hostile environments on the planet. As the largest Class of submarine ever built for the Royal Navy, each will boast 26.4 miles of pipe-work and more than 20,000 cables stretching 215 miles – further than traveling between London and Leeds.
]First Sea Lord, Admiral Sir Ben Key, said: “We welcome the faith shown in the Royal Navy and our people that submarines remain the optimum means of securely deploying the independent nuclear deterrent. This investment will enable the transition from the Vanguard to Dreadnought-class submarines – an enormous challenge, and one we in the Royal Navy willingly accept.
“We have provided over fifty years of unbroken Continuous At Sea Deterrence and we will ensure that the Royal Navy provides the ultimate guarantee of security for the United Kingdom for the next five decades and beyond.”
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