Work on new frigate shifts gears after Active’s keel is laid

Topic: Fighting armsSurface Fleet Storyline: Inspiration Class

Naval history and tradition combined with cutting-edge shipbuilding as the keel was laid of the UK’s next Type 31 frigate.

Hundreds of friends and family watched as HMS Active’s Senior Naval Officer Commander Chris Cozens and first-year electrical fitter Robbie Dick, the youngest apprentice at the Babcock facility in Rosyth, placed a symbolic coin beneath the frigate’s keel.

Eight months after the first steel was cut on the second of the Inspiration-class warships, work on Active had progressed sufficiently for her keel to be laid.
It marks the move into the Type 31 programme’s multi-ship phase – two warships being built simultaneously in the Venturer Hall, underlined to guests at the ceremony by the ever-advancing HMS Venturer herself towering over them.

All five Type 31s – named after ships whose deeds inspire, hence the class’ title – will replace five general-duties Type 23 frigates, while simultaneously the Type 26 City class under construction on the Clyde will take over from the dedicated submarine-hunting 23s.
After months of toil and sweat, keel laying was an opportunity for Babcock employees to show loved ones the fruits of their efforts.

The keel coin was specially-commissioned, designed by a daughter of one of the team involved in Active’s construction, and will be presented to the ship’s company when Active is ready to sail later this decade.

“Type 31 is an incredibly important programme for Babcock, our Royal Navy and Ministry of Defence customer and for the wider UK Shipbuilding industry,” said John Howie, Babcock’s Chief Corporate Affairs Officer.

“We see first-hand the dedication and commitment from our team here in Rosyth, and we are hugely proud to be able to share this traditional ceremony and programme milestone for HMS Active with our customer, families and friends.”