(Alliance News) - Babcock International Group PLC on Friday said that it would be conducting maintenance on one of the UK's nuclear submarines, deemed a critical component of the nuclear deterrent by the country's defence secretary.

Babcock is a London-based defence and nuclear engineering services company, and the second-largest contractor to the UK Ministry of Defence behind BAE Systems PLC.

The company announced that it had won a contract worth GBP560 million to refit the HMS Victorious alongside the UK's Submarine Delivery Agency.

The pair will undertake a maintenance and life extension programme on the "Vanguard Class" submarine, a Royal Navy class of nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarines.

Babcock said that the submarine "performs a vital role as part of the UK's critical continuous at-sea deterrent and represents one of the most complex pieces of engineering there is".

Babcock said that the life-extension programme, which is already underway, will deliver HMS Victorious back to the Royal Navy "modernised and improved", and push its operational capacity "well into the 2030s".

Through the programme, conducted at the company's Devonport facility, more than 1,000 jobs will be sustained in the south west, Babcock said.

HMS Victorious is the second Vanguard Class submarine to undergo maintenance at the Devonport facility. Last February, Babcock was investigated by the Royal Navy for using superglue for repairs to cooling pipes on the HMS Vanguard submarine.

Chief Executive Officer David Lockwood said: "Delivering the programme for this vital and complex defence asset is our top priority. We are proud to have been awarded this complex defence programme which will use our deep engineering expertise to help keep the UK safe."

Defence Secretary Grant Shapps said: "In an increasingly dangerous world, it is crucial that we continue to invest in one of our most important assets, our nuclear deterrent.

"This is another UK partnership with Babcock, that will help keep the UK safe, while boosting the local economy and supporting 1,000 jobs."

Shares in Babcock were up 1.4% at 496.40 pence each in London on Friday morning.

By Hugh Cameron, Alliance News reporter

Comments and questions to newsroom@alliancenews.com

Copyright 2024 Alliance News Ltd. All Rights Reserved.