Royal Navy’s Trafalgar-class submarine HMS Trenchant returns to the fleet

Royal Navy’s nuclear-powered submarine HMS Trenchant was declared operational again following almost two years of maintenance and weapon and sensors upgrades in Devonport Naval Base.

The crew of the Trafalgar-class submarine staged a ceremony in Plymouth, August 19, to mark the vessel’s readiness for operations.

A rededication ceremony is a traditional part of any Royal Navy vessel’s life after completing a period of refit and improvement. The event was attended by the submarine’s sponsor, Lady Meriel Hunt.

HMS Trenchant docked down at Devonport Royal Dockyard in September 2013, for a substantial two year revalidation and assisted maintenance period (RAMP) being undertaken by Babcock. The project became the largest and most complex ever undertaken at Devonport, including significant elements of maintenance and capability upgrades to see the boat through to its decommissioning in 2019.

Babcock Direct Submarine Support, Gavin Leckie, said: “The completion of this project is a reflection of the strong cooperation of the joint Babcock, MoD and ship staff team who have overcome a number of significant technical challenges to deliver HMS Trenchant back to the Royal Navy in an excellent material state, and I’m grateful to all involved for their support in achieving this milestone.”

The work included a double motor generator change in dry dock, external hull paint, main battery exchange, extensive hull surveillance work, wide-ranging system surveys and a package of planned maintenance on the reactor system – amounting to more than 650,000 direct labour hours.

The crew now begin further training and testing so they are ready to begin operating any where in the world.