Type 26 (Picture: MOD).

New Type 26 Frigates Named After Newcastle And Sheffield

Type 26 (Picture: MOD).

The Type 26 will replace the Type 23 frigate (Picture: MOD).

The names of Britain's fifth and sixth Type 26 frigates have been announced as HMS Newcastle and HMS Sheffield respectively.

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson announced the naming of HMS Newcastle on board Offshore Patrol Vessel HMS Tyne at the city's Northumbria Quay.

Mr Williamson made the announcement as he confirmed the retention of three Royal Navy patrol vessels.

The Defence Secretary said: "I am also delighted to be able to continue to strengthen the bond to Tyneside today, by announcing one of Britain’s future world-beating Type 26 warships will be called HMS Newcastle.”

HMS Newcastle, which will be built on the Clyde, is set to provide advanced protection for the UK’s nuclear deterrent and Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers and will offer an anti-submarine warfare capability.

Meanwhile, Defence Minister Stuart Andrew revealed the name of another Type 26 warship, HMS Sheffield.

Sheffield will be the fourth ship to carry the name.

Mr Andrew announced the news while visiting a Sheffield-based supplier in the multi-billion-pound Type 26 programme.

He said: "HMS Sheffield will be at the forefront of our world leading Royal Navy for decades to come, providing cutting edge protection for our aircraft carriers and nuclear deterrent, and offering unrivalled capability at sea.

"From north to south, these ships are truly a national endeavour."

In July last year, the Ministry of Defence awarded BAE Systems a £3.7bn contract to build the Type 26 frigates.

What the Type 26 will look like (Picture: MOD).
What the Type 26 will look like (Picture: MOD).

Eight Type 26s will be built on the Clyde - with each vessel costing up to £250 million.

The ships will specialise in anti-submarine warfare, working closely with the Royal Navy's Trident nuclear deterrent and the new aircraft carriers.

They will be based at Devonport and are set to first enter service in the early 2020s - replacing the Type 23 frigates.

The Type 26s are expected to continue in service beyond the middle of the 21st century.

HMS Glasgow, HMS Cardiff, HMS Belfast, HMS Birmingham and HMS London are the names of the other Type 26s.

The name of the seventh Type 26 has yet to be announced.

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