UK Parliament votes to renew continuous-at-sea nuclear deterrent

20 July 2016 (Last Updated July 20th, 2016 18:30)

The UK Parliament has voted in favour of the Trident renewal programme, which is estimated to cost £40bn, to replace four Vanguard-class submarines that carry nuclear warheads.

The UK Parliament has voted in favour of the Trident renewal programme, which is estimated to cost £40bn, to replace four Vanguard-class submarines that carry nuclear warheads.

The House of Commons backed the renewal by 472 votes to 117, a majority of 355 votes, according to media reports.

UK Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said: “MPs on all sides have voted by an overwhelming margin, to renew our nuclear deterrent; the ultimate guarantee of our national security.

"We have voted to protect our nation from the most serious threats we may face in the 2030s, 2040s and 2050s."

“We have voted to protect our nation from the most serious threats we may face in the 2030s, 2040s and 2050s.

“The British Parliament has sent a powerful message to our allies that Britain is stepping up its international commitments, not stepping back from them.

“We will now get on with building the next generation of nuclear submarines to help keep the nation, and our allies, safe for decades to come.”

The UK Royal Navy's four Vanguard-class submarines were planned to be decommissioned in 2022 as part of the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR), but has been extended to 2028.

Based at the Royal Naval Base at Faslane in Scotland, the submarines are armed with Trident II D5 submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM).

Manufactured by Lockheed Martin, the Trident missiles can travel at a nominal range of 4,000nm, and carry multiple independently targeted re-entry bodies.

The missile is also deployed on-board the US Navy’s Ohio-class submarines.


Image: Trident missile equipped Vanguard-class submarine. Photo: courtesy of Will Haigh/MOD via Wikipedia.