THE Government has provided an update on the progress of the four Dreadnought class submarines being constructed in Barrow.

The boats will form the UK's at sea nuclear deterrent, carrying Trident nuclear weapons, and replace the current Vanguard class.

An official update has revealed the progress made in the last year on the programme following concerns over potential delays. 

The update to parliament said the programme was still within budget and on track for the first submarine, HMS Dreadnought, to enter service in the early 2030s.

It said: "As previously reported, all 12 missile tubes for Dreadnought have been successfully delivered to the BAE Systems Barrow shipyard; these have now been integrated with the relevant parts of the pressure hull to form the missile compartment unit, a significant milestone in the delivery of the programme.

"We continue to work closely with our United States (US) colleagues to ensure missile tube deliveries for the remaining boats in a timely manner.

"The 2015 Strategic Defence and Security Review estimated that the programme is likely to cost a total of £31 billion (including inflation, over the lifetime of the programme) and set a contingency of £10 billion.

"The programme remains within this overall budget and, as of 31 March 2022, £12.5 billion had been spent on the concept, assessment, and early delivery phases of the Dreadnought Programme, of which £2.2 billion was spent in financial year 2021-22."

The update also described the progress on new buildings at the shipyard being used for the programme.

It said one of the buildings connected to Devonshire Dock Hall, where the fabrication of the submarine reactor pipework and the final assembly of the reactor is carried out, was ready for use in July 2021.

Another building 'remains on track' to become operational this year. 

Reports have suggested Rishi Sunak is preparing to announce a multibillion-pound cash injection into Britain’s nuclear deterrence programme as part of a new defence funding package in the wake of the Ukraine war.

The prime minister is said to be due to unveil up to £5 billion of additional cash for defence over the next two years on a visit to America next week.

A large portion of the new money will be earmarked for the Dreadnought programme, The Times reported.