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Sailors join Navy’s first next-generation warship HMS Glasgow

First Sailors with HMS Glasgow
21 October 2021
Sailors are today breathing life into the first of the UK’s next-generation warships.

Half a dozen sailors have joined HMS Glasgow – under construction in her namesake city – to begin turning a lifeless hull into the world’s most advanced submarine hunter.

The ship is the first of eight Type 26 frigates which will safeguard both the nation’s nuclear deterrence and its aircraft carrier strike groups from interference from hostile submarines.

Glasgow is currently on the hard-standing at BAE Systems’ yard in Govan, where shipwrights, technicians and engineers are completing the hull and superstructure.

The frigate, whose Sponsor is the Duchess of Cambridge – known as the Countess of Strathearn when visiting Scotland ¬– is sufficiently complete for the Royal Navy to begin assigning sailors to her. 

The trailblazers will produce the ship’s ‘operators’ manual’: determining how HMS Glasgow will be run, her routines, her systems and sensors to make her an effective fighting force when she enters service later this decade.

It’s also their task to give Glasgow her soul – to set the tone for an active career of 25 years or more, building bonds with her Sponsor, affiliates such as the City of Glasgow, Army and RAF units, charities and community groups.

Sir Simon Lister, Managing Director of BAE Systems' Naval Ships business, presented the ship’s first two junior ratings – Leading Writer Hayden Palmer and logistician Leading Hand Samuela Halofaki – with the inaugural HMS Glasgow cap tallies.

“The ship’s company is the life-blood of a warship,” said Commander Phil Burgess, both the warship’s Marine Engineer Officer and Senior Naval Officer – representing the Commanding Officer until one is appointed further along in the ship’s life.

“With Royal Navy personnel joining HMS Glasgow for the first time, we have reached a key milestone that will enable the engineering, administrative and organisational foundations to be established.

“These are necessary for a modern-day warship to function efficiently and effectively, and by starting now we can best support the build and transition into Service of HMS Glasgow.”

The ship’s company is the life-blood of a warship

Commander Phil Burgess

Leading Hand Halofaki will be responsible for making sure Glasgow has all the requisite equipment and stores aboard, as well as the supporting documentation. 

“I’m delighted to have joined as the first logistics expert in the first of ship of the Type 26 class. It’s exciting to be part of the team delivering a new ship into Service in the RN and I’m looking forward to playing my part in that,” said the father-of-three who has already helped to bring HMS Trent, Tamar and Spey into service.

Sir Simon said he was proud to welcome the first sailors aboard to work with BAE’s teams to together forge “an extremely versatile, capable and powerful addition to the Royal Navy fleet”.

He continued: “Together with the men and women who will live and work onboard HMS Glasgow, we look forward to using our collective skill and knowledge to bring her to life completing the installation and commissioning of the key systems that will give her the vital capability to serve the Royal Navy for decades to come.”

HMS Glasgow is the first of an initial batch of three ships all named after great UK cities, followed by HMS Cardiff and Belfast.

Operating from Devonport Naval Base, the Type 26s will be equipped with bow and towed-array sonars, plus carry a Wildcat or Merlin helicopter, for submarine-hunting missions.

A 5in gun and vertical-launch missile silo, plus an adaptable mission bay will provide the offensive punch and capability of the frigates. 


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