T32 frigates create opportunities at Barrow-in-Furness

30 Nov 2022

T32 frigates create opportunities at Barrow-in-Furness

Whilst the U.K.’s plans for growing its naval capability are not all set in stone, the intention to build the operational concept for its Type 32 frigate has been revealed and is well underway. The Type 32 is designed to have increased capability and presence at sea and is part of the Royal Navy’s medium-term plans to grow its surface fleet.

In March of this year, in a refresh of the U.K.’s National Shipbuilding Strategy, it was stated that up to 5 Type 32s would enter service from the early 2030s. U.K.’s Defence Secretary Ben Wallace spoke at Barrow-in-Furness shipyard at the end of August stating

“We are planning on growing our service fleet, but is our subsea fleet big enough? If it isn’t do we trade one off against the other (or) do we find money from elsewhere?“

There can be no doubt that not only are there ambitious plans to grow the fleet, but the Barrow-in-Furness shipyard will be an integral part of that strategy. SLR has supplied resources to this shipyard over the years and looks forward to continuing to support our national shipbuilding strategy with resources.

Some of the roles likely to be needed as the Type 32s get underway:

Mechanical fitters

Mechanical fitters in shipbuilding fabricate and lay out metal for building and repairing ships. They are responsible for fitting and assembling metal parts to fabricate production machines and other equipment.


A shipyard welder might work on building new watercraft using welding techniques. Welders use electrical currents to fuse metals like steel together to repair parts or build new components.


A shipyard plater is responsible for bending plates to match the curve of the ship’s hull. In a highly skilled job, the plater is responsible for building the integrity of a ship from steel.

Industrial painters

A shipyard painter works to prepare, paint, or repaint the surfaces of marine vessels and equipment. This involves priming and large surface areas and requires a specialist skill set.

There is no question that for candidates with the right attitude and a will to relocate if needed that there is a huge opportunity at Barrow-in-Furness. Situated in the Lake District, this thriving shipyard, the largest in the UK will be at the heartbeat of constructing the Type 32 frigates. It’s not simply about manufacturing, it’s about building the next generation of skilled trades and shipbuilding talent. Projects such as this require hard-working individuals who will form part of an innovative team that will be working on state-of-the-art next-gen vessels.

A thriving sector in a challenging economy

With so much uncertainty in the UK economy, the shipbuilding sector is one area that continues to grow and provide job opportunities. From project managers to engineers and industrial cleaners, tradespeople and professionals alike will no doubt find numerous opportunities with the start of the Type 32 frigate project and SLR will be on hand to communicate to our candidates exactly what positions are up for grabs. Keep your eye on our job board and all our socials.