Gibraltar Patrol Boat Squadron includes HMS Scimitar, HMS Sabre and various RHIB vessels, The squadron are based within Her Majesty's Naval Base Gibraltar 250413 CREDIT MOD.jpg
Gibraltar patrol boat squadron included fast patrol vessels HMS Scimitar and HMS Sabre until 2020 (Picture: MOD).
Navy

Are two of the Navy's expert patrol boats up for sale?

HMS Sabre and HMS Scimitar safeguarded Gibraltar for nearly 20 years, giving protection and security to its maritime environment.

Gibraltar Patrol Boat Squadron includes HMS Scimitar, HMS Sabre and various RHIB vessels, The squadron are based within Her Majesty's Naval Base Gibraltar 250413 CREDIT MOD.jpg
Gibraltar patrol boat squadron included fast patrol vessels HMS Scimitar and HMS Sabre until 2020 (Picture: MOD).

Interest is being welcomed for the potential purchase of two of the Royal Navy's fast coastal patrol boats.

The Defence Equipment Sales Authority (DESA) is inviting expressions of interest for the sale of HMS Sabre and HMS Scimitar.

The Royal Navy would be looking to recoup some of its recent £10m investment to upgrade the Gibraltar Squadron's craft through the sales.

The Scimitar-class vessels were originally built for use on inland waterways in Northern Ireland before being brought into service in 1993, later being acquired by the Royal Navy in 2002.

They were commissioned into the Gibraltar Squadron on 31 January 2003 where they provided force protection and security to Gibraltar's maritime environment.

HMS Sabre and HMS Scimitar safeguarded Gibraltar for nearly 20 years and were briefly replaced by HMS Pursuer and HMS Dasher, before it was announced in 2020 that HMS Cutlass and HMS Dagger, dubbed "guardians of the Rock" by the Navy, would be the permanent replacements.

HMS Cutlass, worth £5m, arrived in Gibraltar for testing in November, ahead of its new role with HMS Dagger.

Currently located at HM Naval Base Portsmouth, the potentially departing Navy vessels would be sold from there.