Over £2bn for Dreadnought Delivery Phase 3

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The Ministry of Defence has announced more than £2bn of further funding for the Dreadnought nuclear deterrent submarines.

Image credit: BAE Systems

The submarines are under construction at BAE Systems’ shipyard in Barrow-in-Furness. This funding will enable the third major phase of the programme, Delivery Phase 3, and marks the latest financial commitment between the MoD, BAE Systems and Rolls Royce. It is the initial investment within a planned total of nearly £10bn for the third delivery phase.

BAE Systems said over £1bn has been invested in advanced technology and upgraded infrastructure at its Barrow shipyard to support Dreadnought, with £450m further investment to be made over the programme’s life.

“We take great pride in designing and delivering one of the world’s most advanced engineering programmes and helping to protect national security,” said Steve Timms, managing director of BAE Systems Submarines.

“Today’s funding announcement allows us to maintain the Dreadnought programme’s progress and continue investing in the infrastructure and skills needed to deliver these highly complex submarines to the Royal Navy.”

This phase of the programme will see the first of four submarines, HMS Dreadnought, exit the BAE Systems’ shipyard to begin sea trials. This will lay the foundation to sustain the Continuous at Sea Deterrent for as long as the international security situation makes it necessary, BAE said in a statement. Learning from the phase will also be applied to the build and test of later boats. 

BAE Systems is set to recruit a further 340 apprentices and 90 graduates into the business this year, adding to more than 1,000 employees currently in training on its early careers schemes within its Submarines business. 

Rolls Royce Submarines has also announced the launch of a new skills academy dedicated to nuclear training, alongside 200 additional nuclear apprenticeships starting September 2022. Based in Derby, the Nuclear Skills Academy will be supported by industry experts including the Nuclear Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre.