The UK Royal Navy’s seventh Type 26 City-class anti-submarine warfare (ASW) frigate will be named HMS Edinburgh after the capital of Scotland, the UK Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson announced.
The Defence Secretary made the announcement during a visit to the Scottish capital in the run-up to St Andrew’s Day.
With the announcement, the names of all of eight Type warships are revealed. The first ship of the City-class is named HMS Glasgow, the second HMS Cardiff, the third HMS Belfast, the fourth HMS Birmingham, the fifth HMS Sheffield, sixth HMS Newcastle and the eighth HMS London. Only the first three ships have actually been ordered as of now and HMS Glasgow will not be in operational service until 2027.
The latest HMS Edinburgh is the seventh Royal Navy ship with the name Edinburgh, the first three being sailing ships of the line serving between 1707 and 1865.
The fourth Edinburgh was a turret battleship completed in July 1887. In a period of rapid technological change, steam power, rifled guns and steel dramatically changed the design and appearance of warships; she and her sister Colossus were the first ships with breach-loading guns.
The fifth Edinburgh was a modified Town-class cruiser, the only sister ship to HMS Belfast which still resides on the Thames. Her WW2 career in home waters and around Europe was distinguished, earning 5 of her 9 battle honours: Norway, Bismarck, Malta Convoys, Atlantic and Arctic. On 2 May 1942, on her return from Russian Convoy escort duties, Edinburgh finally succumbed to repeated attacks by German submarines, aircraft and destroyers. She was abandoned and subsequently sunk having lost 58 members of her crew.
The sixth HMS Edinburgh was the last of the Batch 3 Type 42 (Sheffield class) light guided missile destroyers, commissioned in 1985. Her operational career featured deployments to the Atlantic, Baltic, Mediterranean, Gulf and Indian Ocean. She was also the last T42 to be decommissioned; in 2013 after 28 years of service.
Type 26 City-class frigates are the Royal Navy variant of the Global Combat Ship (GCS) design and manufacture programme of the Ministry of Defence of the United Kingdom. The new class, along with the planned Type 31e class, was selected for the replacement of eight Type 23 Duke class anti-submarine frigates currently in service with the Royal Navy.
The Type 26 will be a multi-mission warship designed to support anti-submarine warfare (ASW), air defence and general purpose operations. The ships will have a crew complement of 118.
The contract award to manufacture the Type 26 was announced by BAE Systems on 2 July 2017. The contracts cover the first three ships – the first of which is currently under construction at the BAE Systems shipyard in Glasgow. A total of eight ships are planned and the contract for the second batch of five ships will be negotiated in the early 2020s.
All of the Type 26 frigates will be built on the Clyde, supported by suppliers across the country and securing decades of work for more than 4,000 people. The first three ships have already been ordered for £3.7bn.