Lost, one navy, finder please return.

robotski
9th September 2006, 08:44
Where is the Royal Navy going?

Just what is the purpose of the navy? is it to defend the UK and its off shore interests, defend the nations supply lines, or support the USA in naval opperations?

Both the shape and size have change over the last two decades, partly for economic reasons, but there is also a change in the role the navy sees for itself, just what is that role? with fixed wing aircraft carriers on a huge scale, assult ships and amphibious back up from the RFA, plus HMS Ocean, it looks like quite an assult force, but does the navy really think the few type 45 destroyers they expect to get will be sufficent to replace all the frigettes they will lose.

I get the impression that they belive a few state of the art ships is better than a larger number of less sophisticated ones, so while we are all pondering the pros and cons of modern naval design, can anyone tell what new technology has been developed to enable a ship to be in two places at the same time? if the reason cited to increase millitery spending during peace time is the threat of terrorism, then should we not be spending the money doing that which we claim we need it for, defending the nation, unless I am mistaken, the UK coastline has not shunk to any great extent, and the navy is supposed to be its first line of defense, how are the ever decreasing number of ships going to perform this task? no matter how smart thier new ships may be, thier deminishing numbers will make this an ever more difficult task.

Why oh why did the UK stop building patrol boats like the Brave class? they would be a much better and cheaper coastal defense, and lets not forget these vessels can pack as much punch as a modern frigette, ask the Israilies, when every other military branch is designing smaller, faster more responsive forces, how come the Royal Navy seems to be heading in the opposite direction?

Oppinions gentleman.

Mike.

LEEJ
9th September 2006, 11:24
Whats' Trident all about??!! (Cloud)

robotski
9th September 2006, 11:30
Whats' Trident all about??!! (Cloud)

Hiding your weapons of mass distuction where hopefuly no one else can attack them, certainly not about reducing the number of missiles aimed at the UK.

yorky jim
9th September 2006, 14:10
ROBOTSKI,from the time i joined the R.N,a good 30 years ago,the navy was laying up more ships than they were replacing we had sold off singer,s and only left with hong Kong.
as you said ,if it were not for the R.F.A to bale us out ,we could end up in deep *****.
we all need to pay our insurance and it looks like the goverment is failing to do the same .
as in the middle east ,they give us a job to do ,and then it turns out bigger than they expected.
the same will be with the navy.

LEEJ
10th September 2006, 07:31
Which missiles are aimed at us?From whom?

Peter4447
10th September 2006, 09:42
I think the classic case for ships being over sophisticated was the Falklands, when the realisation dawned that guns not missiles were still needed for air defence and shore bomdardment.
I also heard a theory put forward not so long ago, that the Navy is suffering all the cutbacks because of the over-stretch that has been caused by the deployment of so much of the Army and RAF in the Middle East etc. Seems there is only so much money that the politicians will make available for the Armed Forces and as it is not enough to go around somebody has got to suffer. As the role of the Navy in these conflicts is limited it is obviously seen as the soft option.
Mind you this is not new, you have only got to look back to the RN at the start of the 1939-45 War. It might have been the largest navy in the world on paper but how many of those ships had actually begun life in the First World War.
Peter4447

robotski
10th September 2006, 10:00
Which missiles are aimed at us?From whom?

I could say, but then I would have to shoot myself.

robotski
10th September 2006, 10:31
I take your point Peter4447
and with ever increasing costs, there are bound to be casualties, but if you took the cost of say a type 45 and its crew, then redistribute that over 5 patrol boats of simpler design, they could cover a lot more ground (sea) than 1 large ship, they could cruise more cost effectively and still cover the coast, but when needed, could out run the type 45, and should the worst happen and the ship was lost or damaged, the maximum loss with the patrol boats is 20%, sort of not putting all your eggs in one basket.

it would not be effective to convert the entire navy, but some part of it would enable a more effective coastal force to be deployed, after all, if that is all the UK can afford now, then thats what we should have, it was considered to be the most effective method of operation by the Chinese untill they had the sort of money to expand thier larger ships, but even now still represents a considerable part of thier naval strengh.

I think part of the UK's problem is historical, keeping up with tradition is desireable but expensive.

And what is the Royal Navy going to do next, lets not forget the type 82 was only the first of a group of ships that were planned, they were cancelled because they were built to escort conventional carrier groups, which the Royal Navy no longer had, with the construction of two new "conventional" carriers, will they deem it nessacery to reactiveate that plan, surley if they cant afford the frigettes they have in service now, nothing like that is going to get built.

No one says it is an easy problem to solve and whatever they do there will be critacisum from some area, but as an island of limited budget, I question the need and wisdom of investing so heavily in assult forces, at this point, we should adopt a more defense orientated force.

You know, I wish there was a spell checker on this computer (Cloud) it would make this a whole lot more readable (*))

Guys your input has been wonderful, keep it coming

regards

Mike.

billyboy
10th September 2006, 10:51
wonnder what it cost to build and maintain the old HMS Vanguard? .. and she never fired a shot in anger either. Never mind lads, the Royal Air force will bail us out same as last time! ... lol. (wonder if they still make Brylcreme these day)

rushie
10th September 2006, 12:09
Gents,

What would happen today if the Argies invaded the Falklands.?

We'd have HMS Endeavour and little else...including soldiers who are all in either Iraq or Afghanistan.

The only solution I feel would be to "borrow" back all the ships we flogged to Chile.!

The Argies are making louder rumblings about reclaiming the Islands, and so far have taken a legal approach. They must be biding their time and waiting for their moment Mk II to arrive.....can't be long now.

Rushie

robotski
10th September 2006, 14:16
Now thats a good point, the RN was in the worst shape it had been in since the Armarda, if it had kicked off a few months later, there would have been no Hermes either as she was being scrapped that year.

We now have less frigettes and destroyers and our troops are deployed elseware.

Its all very well saying we have three Invincible class, but two are laid up at the moment, the only area we can say there is any inprovement in since 1982 is the assult ships, with Albion and Bulwark being excellent repalcements for the aging Fearless and Intrepid.

What should worry us the most however is the airpower situation, it is fine to say Argentina is having maintainance problems with its airforce, but we are not in exactly in great shape either. (egg)

Hugh MacLean
10th September 2006, 15:38
The UK likes to sit at the top table in world affairs. If our Navy and armed services in general were limited to a self defence force then we wouldn't have much influence in the world today. (You may say that would be a good thing).

The problem is that we want to be there at the table with the US and others but we under invest in our forces. This is causing all sorts of problems for the people at the sharp end of all this.

During the 70's and 80's when I served, defence cuts were rife and it took the Falklands to refocus the state of the armed services. The defence budget will always be cut in favour of more pressing needs at home but our politicians have let us down very badly by not scaling back our commitments. In fact we are very seriously over stretched all over the globe.

Rgds

gdynia
10th September 2006, 16:28
Hugh
Entirely agree with your remark about being seriously over stretched but when its backs to the wall its the men and women who man them. They have never let us down in the past and will never in the future-there a special breed like our MN.

Hugh MacLean
10th September 2006, 16:34
Gdynia,

Yes, that's for sure, our people have never let us down. Wish I could say the same about our politicians.

Rgds

robotski
10th September 2006, 17:24
You have to agree with that, our service personel are exceptional, but as you say, its a pity we dont give them the tools to do the job, I dont doubt the quality of what we have, but trying to keep up with the big boys is streching it too thin.

Peter4447
10th September 2006, 17:26
With the threat of terrorism and the need to protect our oil and gas rigs, illegal immigration, drug trafficking etc I cannot understand why the RN has never invested in a simple, gun armed (with something more than the standard 20/40mm single Bofors) General Purpose Frigate that could also operate a helicopter and could carry a specialised Royal Marine unit, that could also be used for Fishery Protection and supporting the work of HM Coastguard and HM Customs. I am sure they would be a good investment if they were used in home waters but I don't think it will ever happen. It is all very well for politicians to want to be on the world's centre stage but as Mike so rightly said what about our own shores?
It was only a couple of years ago that an incident occured off Torbay involving a supertanker that was at first thought to be a terrorist attack, it would have beern comforting to know that the right ship for the right job was immediately available and on hand to deal with such a threat.
Peter4447

robotski
10th September 2006, 17:51
I think the Castle class were intended to fill the role you discribe Peter, but as usual it really was the poor relation, undergunned and only two were built, are the River class taking over this role?

yorky jim
10th September 2006, 18:06
if we built more ships{A BIG IF]i wonder if they could find enough to crew them ,never mind the fuel bill.

Hugh MacLean
10th September 2006, 18:07
Peter, I tend to agree with what you say. I served on minesweepers towards the end of my time and we were utilised in some other roles ie fishery protection.

With all the oil rigs off our shores you would think that they would invest in a patrol boat rather than use vessels that are not built for that purpose.

Mike, the Castle class were again mainly used on fishery protection duties. As you say they were a poor substitute for a patrol vessel.

The River class vessels are replacing the Island class OPV and, as far as I know, will be on fishery protection duties.

Rgds

skymaster
10th September 2006, 18:20
You have to agree with that, our service personel are exceptional, but as you say, its a pity we dont give them the tools to do the job, I dont doubt the quality of what we have, but trying to keep up with the big boys is streching it too thin.
I have to agree and over here in Canada we buy your old submarines that were no good in the first place and expect our navy to do its job!!

Peter4447
10th September 2006, 18:21
Not sure about the River Class, Mike, but the Castle Class are exactly the point I am making. Although they were going along the right lines, they were under-gunned and with just two were ineffective and, as always, with resources stretched to the limit they finished up in the South Atlantic! Retaining half a dozen Leanders might have been an option, although they might have been a bit to big for the actual job, although I am sure they could have been modified. But again sophistication was allowed to take charge. When I served in the 'Aurora' she still carried 4.5's and I had the privilege of spending a day onboard her some years later and after she had lost her guns in favour of missiles. Whether it was true or not but during my day onboard one of the officers told me that they were not supposed to sail without a gun equipped Leander to provide an escort!
Looking aT Hugh's post, I think that the dear old Tons gave sterling service in many roles for which they were not designed and several were actually modified as Patrol Vessels for the Far East. They, in turn, were replaced by some properly designed Patrol Vessels but, as is so often the case, these in turn were not retained but simply sold off - I think at least one is serving in the Irish Navy.
Peter4447

Tmac1720
10th September 2006, 18:32
Um if you guys ever find out where the Navy went any chance you could keep a weather eye out for british shipbuilding as well. It disappeared some time ago and hasn't been seen since.

robotski
10th September 2006, 18:45
Um if you guys ever find out where the Navy went any chance you could keep a weather eye out for british shipbuilding as well. I disappeard some time ago and hasn't been seen since.

How about solving both problems by giving Vosper an order for some of thier excellent 85m MOPV, it ticks all the right boxes (Thumb)

oldbosun
10th September 2006, 19:10
Protecting oil rigs, pipelines, oil platforms, tankers? What's wrong with the oil companies financing towards naval protection for them?

Just a thought.

I read this in a "Readers Digest" when I was a young deckboy.

A British Royal Navy destroyer was tied up alongside an American cruiser.
A young American sailor looked down on the destroyer's deck and shouted to a group of seamen, "Hey Limey, how's the second biggest navy in the world doing"

Immediately a young matelot in a strong, loud, cockney voice looked back up and shouted. "Alright mate, 'ows the second best navy in the world doing?"

Santos
10th September 2006, 19:32
Um if you guys ever find out where the Navy went any chance you could keep a weather eye out for british shipbuilding as well. It disappeared some time ago and hasn't been seen since.

Nor has the British Merchant Navy !!!!!!!!!

rushie
10th September 2006, 19:43
I do believe I posted a news bulletin during the past 3 months that stated that "a ship" can't remember which one, but a new build had replaced two ships on patrol in the South Atlantic. Maybe new, maybe faster, but the patrolling grounds don't decrease. When you're patrolling South Georgia to the Falklands...that's a hell of a lot of water.

What's a Frigate doing in the South Carribean on drug runs.?...yeah ok....helping out the US. Surely she'd be better off seen in the South Atlantic as a deterence to any potential attack there.?

Rushie

Santos
10th September 2006, 19:46
Rushie, while she is stopping Drugs, the liklyhood is that she is stopping some of the cargo reaching the UK and thats worthwhile and OK in my book.

Chris.

rushie
10th September 2006, 19:49
Tmac,

I quoted a couple of instances some time ago as to "personal" references and experiences of British shipbuilding and ports and dockers....and why they deserved they're demise.....got shot down...send me a PM and I'll elaborate...!!

Cheers,

Rushie

robotski
10th September 2006, 20:06
I do believe I posted a news bulletin during the past 3 months that stated that "a ship" can't remember which one, but a new build had replaced two ships on patrol in the South Atlantic. Maybe new, maybe faster, but the patrolling grounds don't decrease. When you're patrolling South Georgia to the Falklands...that's a hell of a lot of water.


That is a prime example of the problem, if you replaced an older ship with two smaller ships that would help with the problem, the type 22 frigette grew to such a size it was bigger than the type 42 destroyer, so replacing it with the smaller type 23 makes sense, but the only reason the RN made this move was to reduce crew numbers and therefore opperating costs, maybe this was not as big a change than it could have been.

rushie
10th September 2006, 20:13
Santos,

I agree with you to a point, but if things escalated in the South Atlantic, then I feel she'd be better off down there.

Thing is to show presence before it happens...and we ain't got anything else.!

Cheers,

Rushie

rushie
10th September 2006, 20:16
Robotski,

I think you read the mail the wrong way round...2 ships were replaced by 1...not the other way.! Have I got that right..?!!!

Chers,

Rushie

Peter4447
10th September 2006, 20:22
That is a prime example of the problem, if you replaced an older ship with two smaller ships that would help with the problem, the type 22 frigette grew to such a size it was bigger than the type 42 destroyer, so replacing it with the smaller type 23 makes sense, but the only reason the RN made this move was to reduce crew numbers and therefore opperating costs, maybe this was not as big a change than it could have been.

The problem with the Type 23's is again one of sophistication. When I ran the Royal Sailors Rest at Portland, on one occasion we had a visit from the Admiral in charge of Sea Training and I mentioned to him that we could always tell when a Type 23 was alongside because the crew would come in, order a meal and promptly fall asleep!
This might sound simplistic but it is a simple fact of life that with smaller crews (lean manning its called in offical circles) and sophisticated ships means that everybody onboard has to multi-task. I was amazed at the duties the lads in my old branch had to perform and, to his credit, the Admiral did say that it was a problem of which they were very aware. In the old days the crew did the all cleaning but they are now having to provide contract cleaners when the ships are alongside to give the crews a break.
Peter4447

robotski
10th September 2006, 20:32
That sounds about right Peter, this is why I belive that creating some smaller and simpler ships to take on some of the more mundane tasks like fisheries protection, this could release some personnel to ease the work load on the more complex ships.

robotski
10th September 2006, 20:35
Robotski,

I think you read the mail the wrong way round...2 ships were replaced by 1...not the other way.! Have I got that right..?!!!

Chers,

Rushie

No, I understood what you said, I was saying that it "should" have been the other way round, instead of losing two and gaining one we should have lost one and gained two, all be it a little smaller and simpler.

regards

Mike.

rushie
10th September 2006, 20:47
Sorry Mike,

My mistake.!

It was interesting to hear that earlier in the year that when the Argie dockers went on on strike that HMS Endeavour was stuck in Beunos Aries (cr*p spelling!) for 6 weeks...! The first British naval vessel to visit Argentina since the Falklands conflict.!

Seems silly they didn't invade then..!!!

Rushie

robotski
10th September 2006, 21:32
This whole thing with the Falklands is daft, they say there is oil there and that is the reason for all the interest, dispite the fact that at this point in time it is so ddp under water that nobody can reach it, so with no economic benift for either side, jus task the people who have to live there what "they" want and let that be the end of it.

rushie
11th September 2006, 10:28
That's too democratic, and far too simple for the politicians of both sides to take in.!

The battle for Gibraltar is still raging hundreds of years later.

Rushie

iantait
11th September 2006, 10:51
The Falkland war was allowed to happen and the building of garrison Falkland Islands was to give Britain and our allies a route and a base in the south atlantic for transitting from Pacific to Atlantic should Panama get funny when she regained control of the canal in 1999

gdynia
11th September 2006, 12:05
This whole thing with the Falklands is daft, they say there is oil there and that is the reason for all the interest, dispite the fact that at this point in time it is so ddp under water that nobody can reach it, so with no economic benift for either side, jus task the people who have to live there what "they" want and let that be the end of it.
Robotski

When the original wells were drilled off the Falklands it was deemed then to deep to drill. Now with new technology we can drill to those depths and even exceed the depths in Falklands. The only thing thats making it uneconomic is its georaphical position. They keep on saying the North Sea is on a downward spiral but if you try and charter a vessel or drill unit you are talking mega bucks if you can get them.The Falklands will be one of th last places to be developed along with the Maldives in the Indian Ocean where oil abounds in greater depths than the Falklands.

PeterG
23rd October 2006, 23:03
Anyone read 'Ghost Force' by Patrick Robinson. Excellent book.
The Argies are convinced to invade the Falklands by Russia.
Of course the Russians knew that the RN was far too underpowered to retaliate compared with 1982, and wouldn't be able to take them back.
I get the feeling that if Argentina did decide to invade the Falklands(touch wood they don't of course), the situation would be very much the same!
Our fleet is far too small for the most prominent ISLAND nation in the world. Tony and his gang have completely screwed up our armed forces, and I can't forgive them for that.

Lindsay Bremner
23rd October 2006, 23:21
Anyone read 'Ghost Force' by Patrick Robinson. Excellent book.
The Argies are convinced to invade the Falklands by Russia.
Of course the Russians knew that the RN was far too underpowered to retaliate compared with 1982, and wouldn't be able to take them back.
I get the feeling that if Argentina did decide to invade the Falklands(touch wood they don't of course), the situation would be very much the same!
Our fleet is far too small for the most prominent ISLAND nation in the world. Tony and his gang have completely screwed up our armed forces, and I can't forgive them for that.

I couldn't have put it better myself. I'm with you 100% on this one.

Slim Whitman
15th January 2007, 20:58
Anyone read 'Ghost Force' by Patrick Robinson. Excellent book.
The Argies are convinced to invade the Falklands by Russia.
Of course the Russians knew that the RN was far too underpowered to retaliate compared with 1982, and wouldn't be able to take them back.
I get the feeling that if Argentina did decide to invade the Falklands(touch wood they don't of course), the situation would be very much the same!
Our fleet is far too small for the most prominent ISLAND nation in the world. Tony and his gang have completely screwed up our armed forces, and I can't forgive them for that.


I totally agree with this.

But I also believe that when Tone and his mates came to power it was on the agenda to completely wreck all the Armed Services and by God they have achieved it. (MAD)

Our Navy now is smaller than the Home Fleet we had when I was in.

Derek Roger
15th January 2007, 21:31
The most usefull thing the Canadian Navy could do is to built a super ice breaker or two to protect the interests in the North West Passage that is again being eyed by our friendley neighbours south of the borderand others such as China
Two heavily armed "super Ice Breakers " will be of immense use as Global warming continues and the NW passage becomes a viable commertial route . Canada should control it and benfit from it .
LNG from the Artic will be in great demand going forward .
The Navy vessels I would envision as being gas turbines burning LNG or steam plant using nuclear fuel and would need about 120,000 HP.

R.Philip Griffin
16th January 2007, 06:41
Where is the Royal Navy going?
Oppinions gentleman.

Mike.

Ahoy Mike, liked your remarks in this post. You ask where have the Brave Class of gunboats disappeared to. I'm not familiar with this vessel type, but why bother with them when there are the perfect Vessels built for the North Sea and surrounding coasts. I refer of course to the AHTS vessels. Using that hull type, get rid of bow thrusters, anchor winches, and "P" tank room; build an accommodation block on the back deck with a readymade helicopter deck, could even put a hanger up there too. Plenty of stability for this addon construction. The old"P" tank rm can become lower half tankage and the upper section accommodation. The back deck accommodation, could handle a squad of marines, customs officers, draught guinness handlers, etal. The chopper deck could handle a Cobra gunship if you want to get really serious about aggressive defence. The real back, back deck could have a few rigid inflatables stowed for stern launching. Removing the propeller guards and all the towing bits and pieces would give quite a good turn of speed, particularly in some of the rough weather experienced up that way. Of course the Andrew do require a few more crew than our dear old crowd used to manage with but build the boat bigger.
Will you accept my opinion?

PeterG
22nd January 2007, 19:30
Lets face it, Blair has to take all of the blame for the destruction of the RN, and ultimately the slow disintegration of our Armed Forces over the last few years.
He was the one who blathered on about WMDs in Iraq, and he was the one who decided to go in all guns blazing with Bush, completely oblivious to the fact that all america wanted was the oil, and was basically a puppet for the Bush administration.
He has, and will continue to throw away billions of our defence budget on fighting a war which should never have begun, getting hundreds of our men and women killed in the process for absolutely no reason, or result.
That money should have been spent renewing our RN ships, Air Force's aircraft, and equipment for our Army.
No matter what he says, Blair is the one to blame for this debacle that the country finds itself in today.
He has, does, and will continue to lie to the faces of the very people who voted him into office in the first place.
In no way am I saying that the other parties in the UK are any better, but Blair has been one of the worst leaders this country has ever had.