Royal Navy’s Fourth Type 26 City-Class Frigate to be Named HMS Birmingham

The UK Royal Navy’s fourth Type 26 City-class frigate will be named HMS Birmingham, the UK Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson announced.

The frigate will be the fourth Royal Navy warship to carry the name of ‘England’s Second City’. The first of her name won three battle honors during the Great War: Heligoland 1914; Dogger Bank 1915 and Jutland 1916. The second, HMS Birmingham (C19), was a 9100-ton Town-class light cruiser, also distinguished herself in WW2 and Korea.

The most recent, HMS Birmingham (D86), is a Type 42 destroyer commissioned in 1976 and she saw operational service in the Gulf and Mediterranean before decommissioning in 1999.

The new class was selected for the replacement of eight anti-submarine frigates of the Duke class currently in service with the Royal Navy. The first ship of the City-class is named HMS Glasgow, the second is named HMS Cardiff and the third ship is named HMS Belfast.

Type 26 frigate

Type 26 frigate is the Royal Navy variant of the Global Combat Ship (GCS) design and manufacture programme of the Ministry of Defence of the United Kingdom.

The frigates, along with the planned Type 31, will replace the Type 23 frigates currently deployed by Royal Navy. There are also plans to export the type.

It will be 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.

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