The cutting-edge technology of the Royal Navy’s versatile new offshore patrol vessels will enable these warships to carry out a wide range of tasks, from disaster-relief missions to maritime security

Vice Admiral Simon Lister

A 160-wheeled flat bed low-loader, which is operated by remote control, transported Forth from the shed where she was built on to a special barge which ferried Forth downstream at a mere half a mile per hour.

The patrol ship, which weighs 1,600 tonnes – the equivalent of 120 London buses – was then lowered into the water, with the barge beneath it, for fitting out at BAE’s Scotstoun yard.

Forth will be followed by Medway and Trent.  The ships will have a range in excess of 5,000 nautical miles and travel at a maximum speed of 24 knots.

Iain Stevenson, Managing Director at BAE Systems Naval Ships, said: “She is the first complex warship to benefit from the new technologies and methods that we are introducing to further bolster our ability to be the best supplier to the Royal Navy.

“Forth has already benefitted from a safer and more efficient build process that enabled much of the work to take place under cover, and as a result she leaves our Govan facility at a much higher rate of completion.”