First seeds sown for HMS Cardiff’s affiliation with Welsh capital
Standing high and dry on the hardstanding, where workers have begun the process of joining the two independently constructed sections together, the imposing Type 26 warship will be used to keep hostile submarines away from UK waters and especially UK warships, notably submarines carrying our nuclear deterrent, and our aircraft carrier battle groups.
Cardiff is the second ship of eight in the class and has recently emerged from the construction halls at BAE’s Govan facility on to the hardstanding to allow the fore and aft segments to be joined and the hull completed.
That will allow the ship to loaded on to a barge, floated off down river, then towed back to Scotstoun for fitting out, where the first ship in class, HMS Glasgow, is undergoing completion.
As yet, Cardiff has no crew assigned to her, but she will take over from destroyer HMS Dragon as the city’s affiliated warship in time.
“Our city had strong links and a lasting friendship with the former HMS Cardiff and we are extremely proud that one of Royal Navy’s next generation of submarine hunters will also bear the Welsh capital’s name,” said Lord Mayor of Cardiff Councillor Bablin Molik, one of the VIPs shown around the ship by BAE and Glasgow’s crew.
“We look forward to strengthening Cardiff’s ties with both the Royal Navy and the new HMS Cardiff in years to come.”
In addition to their primary role, the Type 26s will be able to fend off air attack with Sea Ceptor missiles, hit targets ashore with a new main 5in gun, conduct disaster relief operations, and be equipped for a range of potential operations courtesy of an adaptable mission bay for hosting equipment such as drones, mine-hunting technology or Royal Marines raiding teams.
Brigadier Jock Fraser Royal Marines, Naval Regional Commander for Wales, Western England and the Channel Islands, said: “It has been a memorable experience to accompany senior civic leaders from Cardiff to visit HMS Cardiff in build here in Govan at such an exciting time in the T26 frigate construction programme.
“Vibrant ship affiliations make a huge difference to our ships' companies, and I know that the people of Cardiff will be a tremendously supportive community.”
Other affiliates on the visit were, Lord Lieutenant of South Glamorgan, Morfudd Meredith, Head of Protocol, Paula Speed and Royal Navy Honorary Captain Raj Aggarwal, who said, “It is a great privilege and honour for our city to have this truly amazing world class frigate and her sailors as ambassadors for our communities wherever HMS Cardiff serves around the globe. The communities in Cardiff are truly excited and looking forward to celebrating and welcoming her. ‘’