£400m Dreadnought programme will safeguard 8,000 jobs

A £400 million funding boost for the Dreadnought programme has been announced by defence secretary Gavin Williamson.

The cash will safeguard more than 8,000 jobs in Barrow and across the UK, which are all supported by the £31 billion Dreadnought programme and supply chain.

News of the funding was made by Mr Williamson as he opened BAE Systems’ new £25 million training academy and revealed the name of the second Dreadnought submarine: HMS Valiant.

The newly opened Submarine Academy for Skills and Knowledge will provide around 2,500 people a month - including 600 apprentices from across industry and the Ministry of Defence - with invaluable skills and training to benefit the work carried out on the Dreadnought and Astute submarine programmes for the next two decades.

This latest investment comes after £960 million worth of contracts were announced in May to ramp up the current phase of construction for the UK’s four nuclear-armed Dreadnought submarines.

Cliff Robson, managing director of BAE Systems Submarines, believes the new academy will deliver the very latest in learning and development, as well as demonstrate the company’s lasting commitment its current and future employees.

“This is a fantastic facility that will provide a unique environment in which to train our growing workforce,” he commented. 

“Our investment in skills will not only ensure we have a pipeline of world-class talent available to deliver our complex programmes, but will also positively contribute to the economic prosperity of the region and the UK’s engineering industry.”

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