BAE Systems and Rolls-Royce have been awarded more than $2.46bn (£2bn) worth of contracts for the UK Royal Navy’s (RN) Dreadnought nuclear deterrent submarine programme.

Awarded by the UK Ministry of Defence (MoD), the contract is the initial investment under the $12.32bn (£10bn) overall planned investment until the delivery phase.

Under the third phase or Delivery Phase 3 (DP3) of the programme, the first of four submarines, HMS Dreadnought, will leave the Barrow-in-Furness shipyard, where it is being constructed, and commence sea trials.

This will form the basis to maintain the Continuous at Sea Deterrence (CASD) until the international security situation allows. 

UK Defence Procurement Minister Jeremy Quin said: “The Dreadnought-class will be crucial to maintaining and safeguarding our national security, with the nuclear deterrent protecting every UK citizen from the most extreme threats, every minute of every day.

“Designed in the UK, built in the UK and supporting tens of thousands of jobs in the UK, the Dreadnought programme is a leading example of our commitment to defence manufacturing and will continue to boost British industry for decades to come.”

The entire programme, including the design, build and DP3, is supporting nearly 30,000 jobs across the country.

The Dreadnought-class nuclear-powered submarine is the largest class of vessels being built for the UK Royal Navy to operate in one of the most hostile environments.

Each submarine will have 26.4 miles of pipework and more than 20,000 cables stretching 215 miles.

In addition, a $197m (£160m) contract has also been awarded to Raytheon UK to provide training for Dreadnought crew at HM Naval Base Clyde in Portsmouth.