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Lithuanian Navy plans to acquire 3rd Ex-Royal Navy Hunt-Class MCM Vessel


The Lithuanian Navy is looking to expand its fleet of Skalvis-class Mine Counter Measures (MCM) vessels with the procurement of a third hull to be overhauled and upgraded. It will probably be the HMS Quorn, which patrolled the seas as part of the Royal Navy fleet of Hunt Class Mine Countermeasures Vessels (MCMVs) until 2017.


Lithuanian Navy plans to acquire 3rd Ex Royal Navy Hunt Class MCM Vessel 925 001 M53 Skalvis MCMV (Picture source: Lithuanian MoD picture)


HMS Quorn, which was decommissioned in December 2017, is being transferred under a sales package that will include the regeneration and upgrade of the vessel. The United Kingdom's Defence Equipment Sales Authority (DESA), part of the MoD's Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) organisation, will contract for the regeneration and upgrade on behalf of the Lithuanian Defence Materiel Agency. The package is estimated to be worth between GBP40-50 million (USD50.4-63.3 million).

HMS Quorn is the third MCMV DESA has sold to Lithuania, following in the wake of HMS Dulverton and HMS Cottesmore in 2008. They became operational as the ‘Skalvis’ class in 2011.

The sale will bring in £1m and there will be income from a levy following the sale of the sonar system on HMS Quorn. The £750,000 cost of disposing of the ship has been avoided.

Lithuania wants the vessel to deliver the same capability as the Skalvis class, which it will operate alongside, meaning a significant upgrade programme will be required.

There will be a competition launched for the contract, which could lead to two years of work for a company which has prior experience of the Hunt Class; most likely a British firm. It is hoped the vessel will be operational for Lithuania in 2023.

Thanks to its weapons and sensor systems, the Hunt-class can combine both mine warfare and maritime patrol missions.


Lithuanian Navy plans to acquire 3rd Ex Royal Navy Hunt Class MCM Vessel 925 002Hunt-class mine counter measure vessel Quorn (M41) (now decommissioned) (Picture source: Thales picture)


About the Hunt Class Vessels:

The Hunt Class vessels specialise in active mine-hunting. They use high-definition sonar to scour the world’s seabeds for mines and lost explosives, which are then destroyed by the ship’s clearance diving teams or mine disposal system.

The Hunt-class MCMV is a 725 tons vessel specialized in active mine hunting built by Vosper Thornycroft and Yarrow Shipbuilders Limited for the Royal Navy from 1979. Of the 13 vessels built, 10 remain in service today. The Greek and Lithuanian navy each have two vessels in their fleet.

The mine countermeasure vessel is manned by a crew of 47 sailors. The weapons suite consists in a single 30mm DS30M Mark 2 gun, 2 miniguns and 3 general-purpose machine guns.