The Royal Navy in Scotland

Scotland-based sailors and Royal Marines deliver protection from the most extreme threats to the UK and its allies by deploying the Continuous at Sea Deterrent, protecting home waters, supporting international maritime security, and providing bomb disposal expertise across Scotland and the north of England.

The main role of Scotland’s HM Naval Base (HMNB) Clyde is to maintain the UK’s Continuous at Sea Deterrent, which it has safely and securely delivered, for the last 50 years. Find out more about the UK’s nuclear deterrent here.

Sailing from Scotland, the Continuous at Sea Deterrent works every hour of every day to keep the UK and its allies safe from the most extreme threats to our national security and way of life. 2019 marks the 50th anniversary of the Continuous at Sea Deterrent, making it the longest ongoing operation delivered by the Ministry of Defence (MOD).

As one of the largest employers in Scotland, HMNB Clyde is increasing the number of people employed on-site from around 6,800 now to 8,500 as the base becomes home to all Royal Navy submarines (by 2020) and the UK’s Submarine Centre of Specialisation. It will welcome four new Dreadnought Class deterrent submarines, with the first entering service in the early 2030s. The MOD and its industry partners will continue to support and deliver ongoing investment in skills and infrastructure around the Continuous at Sea Deterrent.

Units currently based at HMNB Clyde include: Vanguard Class deterrent submarines; Astute Class attack submarines; Mine Countermeasures Vessels; the Faslane patrol boat squadron; 43 Commando Fleet Protection Group Royal Marines; Flag Officer Sea Training; Northern Diving Group; Ministry of Defence Police; MOD Guard Service; NATO Submarine Rescue Service.

45 Commando Royal Marines is based in Arbroath. The Royal Navy also has a small regional headquarters at MOD Caledonia which coordinates engagement and outreach activity with the Scottish Government, local authorities, businesses and other organisations across the country.

The Royal Naval Reserve has two units in Scotland: HMS Dalriada in Glasgow and HMS Scotia in Rosyth and Dundee. Royal Marines Reserve Scotland’s HQ is in Rosyth with detachments in Aberdeen, Belfast, Dundee, Glasgow and Newcastle.

Visit the Royal Navy website - external link

More information

Ministry of Defence website - external link

Find out more about armed forces and security in Scotland.

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