Navy frigate’s £20m refit

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ENGINEERS have begun a £20m upgrade for HMS Richmond.

The Royal Navy frigate will have a £4m Seawolf missile system installed, as well as a new ‘brain’ comprising the ship’s weapons systems and communications systems.

An upgrade to Richmond’s 30mm automatic guns is also being carried out to improve their range and accuracy.

The work on the Portsmouth-based ship is being carried out by Babcock Marine in Devonport naval base.

The Seawolf missile installation is part of a £300m programme to fit all Royal Navy frigates with the weapons which can track a target the size of a cricket ball moving at twice the speed of sound from over 20 miles away and fire two missiles to destroy it.

The refit is due to be completed by spring next year, with the ship due to return to the naval fleet in the summer following sea trials.