back to article Navy names new attack sub HMS Agincourt

The Royal Navy, always keeping up with the times, has named its newest attack submarine HMS Agincourt, after the 1415 battle where an English army beat French troops led by its nobility. Agincourt the boat is the seventh and final Astute-class attack sub. The nuclear-powered vessels are used primarily to defend British …

  1. ArrZarr Silver badge
    Joke

    To be fair, they named the entire preceding class of subs to the Astute class the "Trafalgar class".

    It would also be remiss of me to not make some joke about there not being many places on Earth left where the French haven't had some disastrous military defeat.

    1. Gordon 10 Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Which obliges me to reply with the "How many countries has Britain invaded*" linky.

      https://www.telegraph.co.uk/history/9653497/British-have-invaded-nine-out-of-ten-countries-so-look-out-Luxembourg.html

      * For very broad definitions of "invaded". It is the Torygraph after all.

      1. Smooth Newt Silver badge
        Thumb Down

        So sad

        That the Ministry of Defence still uses such outdated, uninspiring names for its warships.

        Agincourt for a warship dates from the fashion for all things medieval and classical heavily in vogue in the 18 and 19th centuries. It actually meant something to Georgians and Victorians brought up on tales of English medieval daring do. But how many 21st century crew etc are going to be inspired by an obscure six hundred year old battle that almost no one has ever heard of. Might as well call it HMS Dull. Was going to write we should be grateful they didn't call it HMS Agamemnon (who the hell is he?), but then I noticed that they have one of those already.

        e.g. If they wanted something that begins with an A, then e.g. the battle of Arnhem has modern resonance and there are enough films, books and memorials that people will have some clear idea about what it was like to be there. But it is hopeless for Agincourt unless you are a medieval historian.

        1. Death_Ninja

          Re: So sad

          "an obscure six hundred year old battle that almost no one has ever heard of"

          I take it that you aren't too familiar with major British/English victories much then...

          Or Shakespeare come to that...

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: So sad

            To be fair I wouldn't expect most people under the age of forty to be....

            But it ends with no borders as your enemies call you bigots and racists, taking it all away...

            Happy I visited when you actually had a strong culture worth protecting...pre-eighties...

            Now you can't even carry a knife outside because its used as a tactic to fog your brains even more.

            SIG SIG SARGON.

            KEK.

          2. RedCardinal

            Re: So sad

            Just like 90% of the population under 30 I suspect... ;)

        2. Jove Bronze badge

          Re: So sad

          You need to engage with the outside world a little - switch-off, and walk-out.

        3. Joe Gurman

          Re: So sad

          Right. Naming an expensive nuclear sub after a glorious British defeat would make so much sense?

          1. Midnight

            Re: So sad

            "Right. Naming an expensive nuclear sub after a glorious British defeat would make so much sense?"

            The H. M. S. Brexit, perhaps?

          2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
            Unhappy

            Naming an expensive nuclear sub after a glorious British defeat would make so much sense?

            Well it was built by Billions Above Estimate.

            As the last one built presumable they'd finally worked out how to build it on time and on budget?

            Yeah. Right.

            Cue the whinning from BAe about the loss of jobs in the a*** end of nowhere in 3..2.1

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: So sad

          "[...] we should be grateful they didn't call it HMS Agamemnon (who the hell is he?), [...]"

          Surprisingly a lot of people would know the name. One of the characters in the recent BBC tv series Troy - Fall of a City".

          1. Roj Blake Silver badge

            Re: So sad

            Agamemnon was also Captain John Sheridan's ship prior to taking over command of Babylon 5.

        5. Rose Compass

          Re: So sad

          '[H]opeless for Agincourt unless you are a medieval historian'?

          I attended a comprehensive school in the 1970s, a school which had been a 'secondary modern' - for people who had 'failed' the 11-plus exam. In my local authority area, the 11-plus and grammar schools had been done away with - all schools were comprehensives, so attendance was based upon catchment areas.

          The fact that it had been a secondary modern - with all the legacy teaching staff - didn't put paid to history lessons. As recently as the 1970s, therefore, ALL pupils, whether they went on to do CSE Metalwork or GCE O Levels in English Language, Mathematics and Physics etc, or no examination subjects at all - learnt about English mediaeval history between the ages of 13 and 14 and before streaming took place for the final two years of schooling.

          What your comment appears to reflect, then, is the sad fact that in modern schools, only 'relevant' subjects are 'taught', giving us several generations of adults now who are all but illiterate in any matter other than that which enables them to earn their dough.

          [Checked with a paper dictionary before submission!]

          1. Ripper38
            Thumb Up

            Re: So sad

            @ Rose Compass. Up-voted, not because

            1- 'failed' the 11-plus - check

            2- 'secondary modern' (late 60s) - check

            3- ...attended a comprehensive school in the 1970s, - check (well actually 3)

            4- Medieval History - loved it so - check

            but because

            "[Checked with a paper dictionary before submission!]"

          2. GrahamRJ

            Re: So sad

            BTW, you're aware your name is that of a famous fictional ship, aren't you?

        6. Mark 85 Silver badge

          Re: So sad

          Was going to write we should be grateful they didn't call it HMS Agamemnon (who the hell is he?),

          That probably would have been to honor Nelson as Agamemmon was a ship he commanded and was one of his favorites... https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Agamemnon_(1781)

        7. Mark 65 Silver badge

          Re: So sad

          That the Ministry of Defence still uses such outdated, uninspiring names for its warships.

          HMS Britney it is then.

          1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

            Re: So sad

            HMS Austerity

            HMS Budget Cuts

            HMS Lean and Mean

            HMS Agile

            HMS XP (eXtreme Power)

            HMS Vicious ("Sid")

            HMS Iron Lady

            HMS Blue Peter

            Fab Four Class... HMS John, HMS Paul, HMS George and HMS Ringo

            HMS Third Foot and Mouth (motto: "Always Ready for Action")

            HMS Chitty Chitty Bang Bang

            HMS James Bond

            HMS Rolls and HMS Royce (powered by RR gas turbines)

            HMS British Leyland (always in dry dock)

            HMS Troutbridge (for training navigation officers)

            1. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
              Thumb Up

              Re: So sad

              You forgot the stealth warship:

              HMS Lucas (no detectable electronic emissions)

              1. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge

                Re: So sad

                @Antron Argaiv

                HMS Lucas (no detectable electronic emissions)

                Yes, when it comes to vehicle electrics, Lucas is known as the Prince of Darkness.

                http://www.mossmotoring.com/prince-darkness-joseph-lucas/

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: So sad

            That the Ministry of Defence still uses such outdated, uninspiring names for its warships.

            HMS Subby McSubface more like!

        8. Roj Blake Silver badge

          Re: Arnhem

          Arnhem went down in history as a bridge too far, because the allies failed to permanently capture it.

          I'm not sure if submariners would feel particularly inspired by sailing in a boat named after a famous defeat.

        9. GrahamRJ

          Re: So sad

          Surely they need to name one the HMS Aardvark. Then it'll always show up first on the list of world warships.

        10. LucreLout Silver badge

          Re: So sad

          But it is hopeless for Agincourt unless you are a medieval historian.

          Or you've ever gleaned the smallest understanding of why instead of sticking one finger up at transgressors, the English traditionally hold up two.

      2. Jove Bronze badge

        Last time I checked it was only seven countries that we had not had a military presence in at some point or another.

    2. Jemma Silver badge

      First rule of the Eskimos

      "We can always beat the French"

    3. Symon Silver badge
      Trollface

      "Trafalgar class".

      At least the Eurostar no longer terminates at Waterloo...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        At least the Eurostar no longer terminates at Waterloo...

        The French themselves are no better. Gare d'Austerlitz in Paris is named after a Napoleonic-era battle that the French won. Of course, that's the French commemorating a battle, quietly forgetting the fact that they went on to lose the war, backing Napoleon Bonaparte after he'd already been proven to be loser...

        1. Nick Leaton

          Spot on.

          Lets rename St Pancras Agincourt station.

        2. stephanh Silver badge

          This story shall the good man teach his son

          "Of course, that's the French commemorating a battle, quietly forgetting the fact that they went on to lose the war,..."

          Mmm, "Agincourt",.. OK, history class, who won the Hundred Years' War?

      2. Nick Leaton

        Which is why we should rename St Pancras, Agincourt station.

        For the same reasons trains from Germany to Paris arrive at Gare Austerlitz

        1. RedCardinal

          In the interests of pedantry, it would be remiss of me not to point out that the French defeated Austria Hungary and Russia at Austerlitz and not Germnay which then was largely Prussia, Bavaria and a host of small principalities. :)

          1. MyffyW Silver badge

            HMS Ajax would have been a good choice to honour:

            - The Greek Hero

            - The Battle of the River Plate

            - The cleaning product from Colgate-Palmolive (other cleaning products are available)

            Not to mention Amsterdam's association football club adjacent to Duivendrecht station.

      3. Craig100

        Reminds me of the story of Churchill planning his funeral. After the trip up the river, where the crane drivers were bribed to work overtime to lower their jibs, he was then due to travel North to his final resting place. So rather than landing on the North bank of the Thames and leaving by some station like Kings Cross, he insisted on being landed on the South bank. This was apparently because he knew General De Gaulle would then have to attend Waterloo station for the farewell from the Capital :) Love that story.

    4. RedCardinal

      I wouldn't mock too much given that Brtain has probably had more military defeats over the years than the French. Strangely enough you don't tend to hear about them in Britain...

      The other fun thing about Agincourt (and Crecy) were that they were French defeats but the French not only won more battles (which again we don't tend to hear about in UK-land) during the Hundred Years War but won the war overall.... :)

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Coat

        French not only won more battles during the Hundred Years War but won the war overall.... :)

        Was that in points overall or was their a ref's decision?

  2. Corwin_X

    A bit pedantic, but it's "we happy few" not "we merry few".

    1. LucreLout Silver badge
      Joke

      A bit pedantic, but it's "we happy few" not "we merry few".

      Check again at last orders and you might find its "merry few".

  3. hammarbtyp Silver badge

    I thought for sometime that the Navy should tale a leaf out of Space X's book and name the ships after Ian M. Banks Culture series

    "H.M.S Only Slightly Bent" anyone?

    1. RAMstein

      oh yes:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_spacecraft_in_the_Culture_series

      "Now We Try It My Way"

      1. Dr Dan Holdsworth Silver badge

        Naming ships after military accoutrements seems a good one, since sooner or later HMS Baldrick will be launched. Preferably by Sir Tony Robinson...

        1. GBE

          I'd vote is for "HMS Cunning Plan"

          Not that the MoD cares what some random USAan thinks....

      2. Fibbles

        oh yes:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_spacecraft_in_the_Culture_series

        "Now We Try It My Way"

        H.M.S. Ultimate Ship the Second

        Seems fitting for the Royal Navy.

        1. BoldMan

          HMS Stood Far Back When The Gravitas Was Handed Out

    2. Doctor Evil

      "H.M.S Only Slightly Bent" anyone?

      No, that one was sold to Canada a few years back ...

      1. Gotno iShit Wantno iShit

        Since we're all being terribly un-pc popping jibes at France I searched for this one I rather like, I couldn't remember the exact phrase:

        Going to war without France is like going deer hunting without an accordion. All you do is leave behind a lot of noisy baggage

        I found it on this site which has a Complete Military History of France:

        http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/text/france.html

        I commend that site to the house.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          England, France....Germany....

          We know what cultures will dominate soon so what good will subs do?

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "H.M.S Only Slightly Bent" anyone?

        Left hand down a bit.... Everybody down!

    3. Jove Bronze badge

      I think they did that with HMS Rodney - one of Cammell-Laird's trademark bent ships.

      1. Craig100

        It was either Renown or Revenge, the Polaris boats built by Cammel Lairds, that had an unplanned for step in it's foredeck and was therefore named "The Birkenhead Banana Boat" in Barrow ;)

  4. Blockchain commentard Silver badge

    Spending that on a sub, the Army can probably only afford longbows now.

    1. SkippyBing Silver badge

      It's the only way to stop them wasting it on Watchkeeper.

      1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

        Re: can probably only afford longbows

        To be fair, the Apache is still a pretty decent helicopter.

  5. Jemma Silver badge

    How about HMS May Island?*

    Hits (figuratively) the target twice in this case.

    Or possibly HMS Isandlwana - as Corporal Jones might have put it "We don't like it up Us"*²

    Both illustrate perfectly the ability of the RN in case of war..

    2 carriers with a life expectancy in seconds

    Planes thereof that'll last seconds before they're grounded (for technical reasons).

    Frigates & (possibly) destroyers that left their weapons at home..

    And lend lease gear from America that's stuck in port because of the wrong kind of sea (ie salty water).

    "There's something wrong with our bloody ships today, Chatfield".. Doesn't really come close.

    * Only the RN could have named a cruiser HMS Blonde

    *² Stated most eloquently by a Captain E Blackadder (Deceased) "The kind of people we liked to fight were 4ft tall and armed with dried grass".

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      HMS Cakes and Unicorns

      Sums up present defence and foreign policy nicely

    2. Steve the Cynic Silver badge

      How about HMS May Island?*

      Would that be a reference to the Battle of May Island?

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_of_May_Island

  6. SVV Silver badge

    Dear France

    Please rename the Eurostar-hosting Gare du Nord in Paris as Gare du Hastings. Then we can have a good laugh together as all the prats who thought this jolly Agincourt jape tres amusant explode in fits of angry outrage.

    1. Jemma Silver badge

      Re: Dear France

      Not really, because at the time Normandy was not part of France, it had been ceded to the Normans due to the habit of the French running away (hence the old joke about the French Crossbow - never fired, dropped once). It didn't become so until much later. Even then if I remember it right it had and still had until recently an unusual level of autonomy.

      1. PhilipN Silver badge

        Re: Normandy autonomy

        Right. What you might call a 1,000-year rei..... dukedom.

    2. SkippyBing Silver badge

      Re: Dear France

      Well they've already named ships after Admirals and Pirates* that have fought, and occasionally beaten, the Royal Navy, such as Surcouf, Forbin, and Chevalier Paul. Cassard even raided Cork while the UK owned it. Not forgetting Lafayette who played a large part in the UK no longer owning the USA, it's quite a nice ship as they go and hosts a decent cocktail party. At no point was I upset by the name.

      Maybe the French just don't get perpetually offended on other people's behalf?

      *In some cases the same person.

      1. Steve 114
        Pirate

        Re: Dear France

        An ancestor here got command of captured French 'HMS Chiffonne' who sailed so well she 'burned out the pirates in the Gulf'. Come again!

    3. Steve 114

      Re: Dear France

      The thing about Hastings, was that it was a 'Norman' (norsemen) conquest, one of several cousins-in-occupation winning disputed territory, and then running it with rather notable efficiency. Nothing much to do with 'French'

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: Dear France

        "and then running it with rather notable efficiency"

        It was largely run post-Conquest by the same A/S who'd run it previously.

        1. Steve 114

          Re: Dear France

          Agreed - isn't 'office politics' wonderful?

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Dear France

          "[...] and then running it with rather notable efficiency"

          William inherited a very efficient English civil service distributed throughout the realm. All he had to do was issue the edicts and the existing system did the rest.

          1. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

            Re: Dear France

            William inherited a very efficient English civil service

            And gradually dismantled it because they, rather unsportingly, wanted a say in how the country was run. After all, under the Saxon system, free men were entitled to a say in how things were run.

            Under the Normans, not so much.

            (The English titles for Noble ranks are a real mixture: King (Saxon, Cynge), Duke (from Latin Dux, meaning "commander of two legions"), Earl (Saxon, Eorl meaning "Noble Warrior") etc etc.

        3. John Smith 19 Gold badge
          Unhappy

          It was largely run post-Conquest by the same A/S who'd run it previously.

          So no real change there then in about a 1000 years?

      2. CrazyOldCatMan Silver badge

        Re: Dear France

        winning disputed territory, and then running it with rather notable efficiency

        I think most of The North[1] would disagree. Unless you define "running it with rather notable efficiency" as "slaughtering 30% of the population because they got a bit uppity"..

        [1] Of England. As wot used to be called "The Danelaw" and was, in part, populated by other descendants of Vikings who didn't like those posh la-di-da descendants of Vikings coming over here from Normandy and slaughtering those southern Saxon ponces..

    4. hammarbtyp Silver badge

      Re: Dear France

      Well the Normans, were technically Scandinavian, but Gard du Formigny or Gard du Castillon would do nicely

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Dear France

      Well, we could always reverrt to using Waterloo as the Eurostar terminal

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Dear France

        "Waterloo " .... I suspect most "millenials" probably think its named after the song from Mama Mia

        1. ArrZarr Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: Dear France

          @AC

          I will have you know that until I saw the list of songs from that album, I thought that song was called "Wanadu" which I presumed was some island in the Caribbean that I hadn't heard of.

          And as any fule kno, All loos have water in them. Always have.

    6. Nick Leaton

      Re: Dear France

      Like Gare Austerlitz eh? Why not rename St Pancras?

      We can then add a large V for Victory hand in Bronze in Front.

      Of course from the other side, ....

    7. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: Dear France

      "Please rename the Eurostar-hosting Gare du Nord in Paris as Gare du Hastings. Then we can have a good laugh together as all the prats who thought this jolly Agincourt jape tres amusant explode in fits of angry outrage."

      But Hastings was quintessentially English while Poirot was Belgian.

  7. Simon Rockman

    Once we have Neutrino detectors in satellites all nuclear powered anythings will lose any element of secrecy an the subs will be obsolete.

    1. hammarbtyp Silver badge

      Sure, all we need to do is lift 50,000 of pure water plus detectors into orbit and find some way to shield it against the trillions of neutrinos coming from the sun.

      Shouldn't be too difficult

      1. Bill Gray

        "Sure, all we need to do is lift 50,000 of pure water plus detectors into orbit and find some way to shield it against the trillions of neutrinos coming from the sun."

        No problem. We'll do it at night.

    2. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      You do not need neutrino detector.

      There is no need for exotic tech. You just need to pay attention to the "enemy" presentations in their native language and filter out the rubbish interpretation the press is feeding you.

      https://www.defensenews.com/space/2018/01/12/russias-nuclear-underwater-drone-is-real-and-in-the-nuclear-posture-review/ - a lot of this is from pictures of a preso taken when one of the (i do not envy the poor thing) assistants of the Russian general staff forgot to cover it.

      The press (being the press) on both sides of the fence presented us this as some scary doomsday cobalt supernuke. One off super duper weapon. Doomsday device.

      It ain't. Read carefully. Slide on the right top (translating for those not proficient in великий и могучий):

      Left: Primary applications of this system are: engagement with torpedoes of capital ships, mixed rocket-torpedo load missions, setting of minefields (including clandestine), hunting of opponent atomic submarines.

      Right: Out of the multitude of possible applications the publicly disclosed one is carrying a warhead of up to 100Mt with a possible "cobalt bomb" (emphasis on multitude - mine).

      And suddenly the whole idiotic superweapon malarkey makes sense.

      It is not. It is a cut down, cheap, semi-automated and semi-autonomous (possibly going autonomous in the future) unmanned hunter-killer submarine. No frigging 100Mt cobalt bombs - basic torpedoes and missiles. That also explains the gigantic sonar array in the bow. All tech is available - this is just the old Alpha/Lira class (the one which necessitated the development of the Spearfish torpedo) with the meatware removed and a further improved reactor. It is cheap too. Way cheaper than a manned hunter killer. It also fits the way they are building stuff - as a design philosophy it is the navy equivalent of a Uran-9. Cheap, unmanned, designed for manufacture in quantity.

      So what can a submarine coming out of port do against an opponent which is doggedly following it constantly shining on it with active sonar? What can it do if it is doing it from deeper than its maximum torpedo engagement depth (up to 500m)? What can it do if the "target" is 40% faster than its fastest torpedo ~ up to 100 knots (not difficult if you do not need to carry meatsacks)? How do you think it will perform if the crew knows that they have a gun pointed at their temple 24x7x365?

      If (there is an if, but an a big one here) they start building these, the Agincourt in 5-10 years or so it will be near-obsolete. Still better than the Dreadnought class which may end up being obsolete before even leaving for sea trials.

      1. Doctor Evil

        Re: You do not need neutrino detector.

        "It is a cut down, cheap, semi-automated and semi-autonomous (possibly going autonomous in the future) unmanned hunter-killer submarine."

        Possibly a very good idea for our Russian friends, given their track record with manned submarines.

      2. TDog

        Re: You do not need neutrino detector.

        "So what can a submarine coming out of port do against an opponent which is doggedly following it constantly shining on it with active sonar? What can it do if it is doing it from deeper than its maximum torpedo engagement depth (up to 500m)? What can it do if the "target" is 40% faster than its fastest torpedo ~ up to 100 knots (not difficult if you do not need to carry meatsacks)? How do you think it will perform if the crew knows that they have a gun pointed at their temple 24x7x365?"

        Well a modernised subroc https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UUM-44_SUBROC would do quite nicely. Particularly with a spearfish in it. Pop off, nip about 20 KM in advance of the targets projected path and go active immediately. OK - that's not necessary. 100 knots is bloody noisy. And you aren't going to change course very fast. (high length to cross sectional area ratio so any change of direction causes serious forces perpendicular to the direction of change.) Otherwise you snap. That doesn't even need the spearfish to say 'hello'

        It's the empty battlefield phenomenon. Dates back to the introduction of smokeless powder. If you can see it you can kill it. It's just a question of how? Some kills require usually unacceptable processes - as in "Can I nuke him now Sir?". But in most situations, once found means vulnerable, which generally suggests that shouting 'HERE I AM' tends to lead to a technological solution which fundamentally is constrained by 'my cost is less than your cost'. And a spearfish / subroc equivalent is a damn sight cheaper than unmanned submarines.

        1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

          Re: You do not need neutrino detector.

          Some kills require usually unacceptable processes - as in "Can I nuke him now Sir?"

          My exact thought. If it is in under 500m (which it can do) nothing can kill it short of SUBROC/RPK2 or whichever one of the two the Chinese clone and copy.

          OK - that's not necessary. 100 knots is bloody noisy.

          That is its maximum design speed. Nobody said it is operating at it if it is hunting. Once again - "press release weapon case use vs real use case". If it is crawling at a couple of knots same as its target and keeping track of it passively it should be quieter than a sub. Anything else aside it is much smaller and has no life support equipment to operate. They tested it for the first time 2 years ago (according US Navy report) so in reality we do not have a clue if they are using it now or not.

          In any case, if they are successful (or if the Chinese copy it), electric torps as a replacement/complement to the Spearfish and the Mark 48 are back on the menu. By the way, IMHO it is only a matter of time until they are successful - the tech is there and this is cheaper than a normal sub.

    3. TheProf

      Thinks.......

      "Once we have Neutrino detectors in satellites"

      Hmmm.... Big Euro-fuss over the Galileo satellite system..... Brexit bounders want to build The Great British Positioning Satellite system......

      How many birds do you think they'll need to launch to spot all the enemy subs?

  8. getHandle

    VMWare?

    Why? Just why?

    1. Corwin_X

      Re: VMWare?

      They can make the most of the kit they have in the smallest space. VMware can run multiple systems on one hardware box instead of having a whole bunch of seperate servers taking up space. Subs don't have the room for racks of servers, they're cramped as it is. I know because I know someone who's a sub driver and I got a tour once.

    2. Roj Blake Silver badge

      Re: VMWare?

      Because they have the best junkets?

  9. Florida1920 Silver badge

    Agincourt

    Shirley, they will christen it with French bubbly.

    1. Anonymous Coward
  10. Alistair Silver badge
    Windows

    I regularly tromped all over agincourt when I were a lad.

    Not like it put up much of a fight.

    No, This agincourt.

  11. 0laf Silver badge
    Mushroom

    I still think HMS Did-you-spill-my-pint? and its sister ship HMS Are-you-lookin-at-my-bird? would be winners

  12. Steve 114
    Pirate

    Nice Subs, if we had an adversary with similar assets (rather than, say, Russians who should be cultural allies, or Chinese, who have no tradition of invasiveness. All 'our' likely threats will be in shallow seas, where Subs are not much use. How about several dozen fast boats, equipped to arrest smugglers, repel human-traffickers, help immigrants get back home, and thus give independent commands to deserving young RN officers? Nothing nearing the price of a (wonderful, but obsolete) submarine>

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Chinese, who have no tradition of invasiveness.

      Tell that to Tibet.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Chinese, who have no tradition of invasiveness.

        Good luck repelling an invasion of Tibet with submarine, short of pressing the big red button

  13. Identity
    Coat

    I understand

    that it was at the battle of Agincourt that the famous saying "pluck yew" became popular...

    Mine's the plate armor...

    1. Korev Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: I understand

      Oh you're going, good Knight

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I understand

      "[...] that it was at the battle of Agincourt that the famous saying "pluck yew" became popular..."

      It is said that the derogatory two fingers sign originated in the fingers used to draw an English/Welsh longbow string. IIRC the French would apparently amputate them from any archer they took prisoner.

      1. Grikath Silver badge

        Re: I understand

        yeah.. That nice myth...

        Except that archers were commoners ( very highly trained, but still *commoners*) , and were not much use for ransom... The end result in case of capture would have been rather more terminal, I'm afraid.

        Old Will was a bit of a tosspot when it came to his propaganda skits.

  14. JimmyPage Silver badge
    FAIL

    History fail ?

    For the French, the key fact of Agincourt was the (then) despicable act of the English in killing prisoners of war

    https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/agincourt/0/steps/8864

    As that article opens:

    For modern observers, one of the best known and most notorious events during the battle of Agincourt is the massacre of at least some of the French prisoners by their English captors at the end of the first phase of fighting.

    Which suggests the choice of name - and it's associations must be well known to the MoD. And if it's not, what does it say for the MoD as a "modern observer" ??????

    You'd think the Uk could pretend it gave a toss about being friends ?

    1. SkippyBing Silver badge

      Re: History fail ?

      Have you looked at the names of French ships? They don't worry about what we think about theirs and I expect they'd be surprised at the level of introspection some people in the UK are giving to naming a ship after something that happened 600 years ago.

      It wasn't that long ago* the German Navy had three destroyers named after Lutjens (commander of the Bismarck battlegroup), Molders (a WW2 fighter ace with over 100 kills), and Rommel (something to do with tanks).

      Meanwhile the US Navy has a range of ships named after battles in the War of Independence.

      In summary most countries don't care what other countries think of the names of their ships, so why should we?

      *late '60s - early 2000s

      1. 10forcash

        Re: History fail ?

        "Rommel (something to do with tanks)." not really, Rommel was a master of infantry attacks, but more widely an excellent tactician - these days he'd be some faceless 'military planner' at the equivalent of PJHQ - the real 'tank man' was Heinz Guderian, interestingly, both were let down by logistics blanket-stackers

        1. GrumpyKiwi Silver badge

          Re: History fail ?

          Rommel wasn't let down logisticians. He utterly ignored them and then expressed both shock and horror as he ran out of supplies/fuel/munitions at exactly the time that they'd warned him he would.

          He was the definition of a good Divisional commander, an average Corp level one and a poor Army commander.

          Whatever other bad things I may say about Montgomery he at least (mostly) understood the importance of logistics.

          1. SkippyBing Silver badge

            Re: History fail ?

            'Whatever other bad things I may say about Montgomery he at least (mostly) understood the importance of logistics.'

            Oddly Auchinleck, his predecessor in North Africa, didn't seem to understand their importance, at least when it applied to the enemy, and was quite happy to lose Malta as he didn't appear to appreciate its importance in stemming the flow of supplies to North Africa.

            1. GrumpyKiwi Silver badge

              Re: History fail ?

              To be fair to the Auk, he had (apart from the Western Desert) also Malta, Iraq, Syria, Somalia, Ethiopia and Greece/Crete to cope with, all of which were a drain on his resources. And Churchill wanting him to treat all of them as his #1 priority.

              And Malta at that time was of little help in cutting off Axis supply lines being bombed constantly to the point where the RN's submarines (and the RAF's bombers) had been forced to abandon it. It was really only when Sir Keith Park was put in charge of the air defences of Malta that things turned around.

              1. SkippyBing Silver badge

                Re: History fail ?

                Agreed and like most of Churchill's commanders he suffered from the PM back seat commanding.

                I just found it surprising when I was reading about Operation Pedestal recently that Auk didn't seem to see the strategic significance and refused to consider a diversionary action which the RN and RAF requested. For various reasons post Pedestal Malta was again playing a bigger role in cutting off axis supplies which helped lead to the eventual Allied victory in North Africa.

          2. ArrZarr Silver badge
            Boffin

            Re: History fail ?

            *history context for German logistics problems in North Africa*

            There was a commando raid on the viaduct that all of the North African supplies had to be transported through (northern Greek mountains iirc) that had it out of action for an extended period just as the allies were beginning their attack.

            Not helped by promises from the German commander of the area in which the viaduct was located that it would be back up and running in 6 weeks.

            1. LDS Silver badge

              Re: History fail ?

              Supplies came from the Italian ports - just the Italian Navy wasn't effective in delivering them as needed, lost the opportunity to size Malta, and just like the British counterpart, was trying to avoid a full scale battle between the main forces for fear of losing battleships (some only sunk while harboured by surprise attacks - but refloated). Nobody for a while fully controlled the Mediterranean.

              All the Axis forces didn't understand fully a modern war needs a big supply chain - Japaneses didn't protect their commercial traffic because a "warrior" is diminished if he escorts a "maru" ship - and this mindset was not very different in the others, albeit Germany understood the need to disrupt enemy supply lines. But it attacked Russia using still horse carriages, and without enough transport planes, and without large ones - you also need specific ships, airplanes and vehicles to deliver everything in time.

              On the other end, US built the biggest logistic systems to supply not only its troops, but allied ones as well - ensuring both Britain, Russia and China could receive whatever needed to sustain the combat efforts - a starved soldier and without ammunition may not fight well.

  15. LDS Silver badge

    Wasn't the Ottoman empire allied with Germany in WWI?

    Thereby, handling a complete battleship to the enemy, even if paid for, would have not been really a smart move.

    Not that the British fleet didn't repaid them with a lot of iron left on the seabed when Churchill had the idea to force the straits with some poor doomed outdated ships....

    1. Jemma Silver badge

      Re: Wasn't the Ottoman empire allied with Germany in WWI?

      No, at least they weren't until the RN nicked said superdreadnought, that had been paid for by public donations in the Ottoman Empire and was a pretty useful piece of kit by all accounts.. naming her HMS Erin.

      That and the Germans turning up in the Dardanelles and turning over two cruisers to the Turks kinda put the boot into Anglo-Turkic diplomacy. The Goeben lasted as an operational capital ship from 1912 until 20 December 1950 and survived until 1973.

      Kind of reminds me of a certain scene in Indiana Jones.. to paraphrase..

      "10 11in guns, 2 Parsons Turbines, and a top speed of 25kts - and we even like the colour..."

      Up until the Erin debacle the Turks had been British allies.

      1. GrumpyKiwi Silver badge

        Re: Wasn't the Ottoman empire allied with Germany in WWI?

        "Up until the Erin debacle the Turks had been British allies."

        Sort of. The Ottoman navy was quite pro-British (hence wanting British ships for their navy) while the army was more pro-German (there were lots of German instructors).

        The UK's seizing of the Erin ruined the pro-British faction and pushed them into the arms of the pro-Germans.

    2. Jemma Silver badge

      Re: Wasn't the Ottoman empire allied with Germany in WWI?

      And while we're on the subject. If the cretins at the admiralty had followed Churchills plans as written - not let the Frogs get involved it wouldn't have been an almighty balls up. It was the French who forced the straits before the landings and therefore gave the Germans and the Turks a heads up as to what was going to happen.

      At which point every tube* and machine gun within 150 miles and every Turk, German and anyone else who fancied a punt at the British and French et al were sitting there waiting and gave the allies a right royal pasting.

      If there had been one attack only it's likely to have succeeded - and guess who it was who diverted all the blame to Churchill - the very French twerp who'd forced the straits prematurely.

      * Artillerymans slang for an artillery gun.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "At which point every tube* and machine gun"

        IIRC, it was the mines that became a problem....

        You may want to fix Wikipedia, though, because there they report [from Carlyon, Les (2001). Gallipoli. Sydney: Pan Macmillan.] that it was a combined British-French force to attack first.

        It looks more the classic poorly planned British attack, performed by admirals promoted more because of their noble links than actual seamanship and battle experience...

    3. thenitz

      Re: Wasn't the Ottoman empire allied with Germany in WWI?

      If Wikipedia is to be believed, Britain seized the ship early on, while Turkey was still neutral, thus pushing them closer to enter the war on the German side.

  16. Corwin_X

    I wonder if anyone else here feels that naming our latest nuclear sub after a famous French defeat by the English might not be entirely diplomatic in the middle of Brexit negotiations?

    1. PNGuinn Silver badge
      Devil

      Naming things

      "I wonder if anyone else here feels that naming our latest nuclear sub after a famous French defeat by the English might not be entirely diplomatic in the middle of Brexit negotiations?"

      Would you rather we called the bloody thing the M'hem Therese?

      1. Jemma Silver badge

        Re: Naming things

        could always informally nickname it "the Y Shaped Coffin" after mademoiselle "if it moves" Markle.

        They're trying to link her to Jack the Ripper (Holmes) - actually a chap named Frederick Bailey Deeming. Ironic really given the two of them.

      2. Corwin_X

        Re: Naming things

        Just saying - We like giving the finger to the French and they equally enjoy giving the finger to us "rosbifs". Friendly rivalry. But Agincourt (or to give it it's proper name Azincourt) is a bit on the nose while we're trying to build a new relationship with the rest of Europe.

    2. SkippyBing Silver badge

      To be fair their flagship is named after a politician who did everything he could to keep the UK out of the EU. That was probably a hint.

  17. Antron Argaiv Silver badge
    Happy

    heavily armoured French knights

    pronounced, of course, "KU-niggits"

    1. Jemma Silver badge

      Re: heavily armoured French knights

      Wonder who it'll be who gets to turn up in the Rover P6 at the end.. Please let it be Smeagol Gove and please let there be landmines.*

      *It'd be a waste of a good P6 to be sure, but at least it's an honourable death.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I do hope the ship's crest will include a two fingered salute.

  19. fidodogbreath Silver badge
    Childcatcher

    Shocking

    Brits trolling the French? Who has ever heard of such a thing?!?

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "[...] and the lightly equipped English then set about the bogged-in Frenchmen, [...]"

    Very lightly equipped. Part of the English prepared defences against the French Chevaliers were stakes hammered into the ground at an angle. The men whose job that was were equipped with mallets - with which they apparently dispatched the bogged down knights after removing their helmets.

  21. JimC Silver badge

    Artful as in Artful Dodger

    Sounds like a really good name for a submarine. The whole idea is to sneak up, do the deed, and slip away without anyone seeing you.

  22. JeffyPoooh Silver badge
    Pint

    Astute fitted with Dell hardware inside

    If it's anything like my work Dell PC, it'll be noisy enough (acoustically) to be tracked from the Kremlin (directly) if they leave a window* open.

    So the Astutes would be safe all winter I guess.

    (* Kremlin window, not submarine window.)

  23. Mark 85 Silver badge

    Dreadnaught class subs?

    as the factory continues to make the reactors that will power our state-of-the-art Dreadnought subs into the 2060s."

    There's just something about the name Dreadnaught class.... holdover from pre-WWI perhaps? Ships that were well obsolete by the time they were needed to fire shots in anger? Impressive when built, they soon were out-classed by just about every other country. I hope this isn't a foreshadowing for the British Navy.

    1. SkippyBing Silver badge

      Re: Dreadnaught class subs?

      'Ships that were well obsolete by the time they were needed to fire shots in anger? Impressive when built, they soon were out-classed by just about every other country.'

      The Dreadnoughts were literally cutting edge when they went to battle in WW1. They probably weren't outclassed until the 1930s when the next naval arms race started. Bear in mind only one was built to the plan for Dreadnought, subsequent ships were to an improved design and when a post-war comparison was made to one of the surviving German ships the British ones were found to be generally superior and more technologically advanced*. In fact the Queen Elizabeth class battle ships which entered service from 1914 to 1916 served in both world wars.

      *I've got a link to the article somewhere, but can I find it?

      1. SkippyBing Silver badge

        Re: Dreadnaught class subs?

        Sorry not an article, but in 'A History of the Royal Navy: World War 1' by Mike Farquharson-Roberts, Chapter 8.

        Comparing Bayden and HMS Revenge*, the German ship was about 20% more flexible which wouldn't have been accepted by British naval architects and probably explains why the Seydlitz would spring leaks from the shock of firing its main armament. The German ship also had less effective internal sub-division to control flooding, was slower to roll which would have caused problems in the North Atlantic if it ever got there, magazines closer to the ships sides and hence more vulnerable, main armament that couldn't elevate as high limiting its maximum range, and less effective range finders.

        The Germans did make better use of their range finders by walking their fire onto the target rather than making a series of corrections. Unsurprisingly the British changed to the German method post-Jutland and also designed and issued new ammunition when it was found theirs had had problems penetrating armour if it hit obliquely.

        *Similar in displacement, armament, and machinery. Baden was also the design start point for the Bismarck which wasn't a particularly modern ship.

        1. Chz

          Re: Dreadnaught class subs?

          Armour was generally better on the German ships, but that's more a reflection of doctrine than shipbuilding prowess. The Germans knew they'd be outnumbered and survivability was key to fighting any battle with poor odds. The RN was always more about hulls and guns. No doubt the RN BBs had superior seakeeping - the Germans were really only expecting to putter about the North Sea for the most part and built accordingly. RN boats could be expected to be posted anywhere on Earth.

          I think the RN was slightly smug about things before then. The Lizzies and Revenges are very sturdy boats and compare well to anyone else's. But before then, perhaps not-so-much. Even ignoring the battlecruisers.

          1. SkippyBing Silver badge

            Re: Dreadnaught class subs?

            There's a section in the book I mentioned before where they compare the armour and it wasn't as biased in Germany's favour as some people think. The major issue the RN had at Jutland was ammunition handling and control of the cordite which made them more liable to blow up. Again this was addressed post Jutland but there wasn't the opportunity to demonstrate it!

            A problem the RN had was that for the previous 100 years they hadn't really been challenged so there was a level of complacency and rigidity that took time to address.

            Oddly the battle cruisers were effective when used properly, e.g. at the Battle of the Falklands where they were able to sprint to the far side of the globe and then out gun enemy cruisers. It was just madness pitting them against actual battleships as at Jutland or against the Bismark with the Hood.

          2. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            "but that's more a reflection of doctrine than shipbuilding prowess."

            No, it was that German steel mills were more advanced than British ones. It's no surprise the main type of armour was Krupp cemented armour.

            In turn this superiority made Germany too reliant on the this very capability of their steel to sustain damage, they didn't employ other methods to reduce it (i.e. slanted armour on tanks).

            It is true Kriegsmarine was never the main force in the German Army - and Tirpitz doctrine was to build a fleet poweful enough to be a menace for the Home Fleet - not a worldwide one. Germany has always been a continental power (and that would become a liability when many supplies were needed from afar)

            Britain was in fact forced to move ships back to the home waters to ensure its superiority - which let, for example, Japan raise as a sea power - which was demonstrated when they sank the Russian fleet.

            1. Chz

              Re: "but that's more a reflection of doctrine than shipbuilding prowess."

              "No, it was that German steel mills were more advanced than British ones."

              The qualitative difference would be statistical noise. German metallurgy was more innovative, but BB plating was pretty much the same on either side. (both were using what you'd call Krupp Cemented - the RN had moved on from Harvey ages ago) The extra 2" of belt armour that the KM specified was a lot more than just statistical noise though.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "They probably weren't outclassed until the 1930s"

        The early dreadnoughts became obsolete early, because the arm race due to WW1 quickly improved ship designs, and increased guns caliber and range, making the older ships less capable. Also, fuel switched from coal to oil.

        After the war, the naval treaties required to shrink the fleets, and of course the older ships were the ones destined to demolition. Dreadnoughts herself was soon scrapped after the war.

        Some of the later and bigger dreadnoughts were modernized between the war, and could saw combat in WWII - but usually more modern, faster and powerful battleships were already built, so they were used often in secondary roles.

        Later battleship still used the "dreadnought design" - albeit an improved one - just became larger, with bigger guns, thicker armour, and faster - especially the US and Japanese ones - to be able to work with the fast attack carriers.

    2. Roj Blake Silver badge

      Re: Dreadnaught class subs?

      The problem with the old dreadnoughts was that prior to the construction of HMS Dreadnought the Royal Navy had an overwhelming numerical advantage over every other navy, but afterwards every pre-dreadnought ship everywhere was effectively obsolete - so other nations only had to build a single ship to be on level-pegging with the UK.

      1. SkippyBing Silver badge

        Re: Dreadnaught class subs?

        True, the only remaining advantage the UK had was that it could build them faster than anyone else as the infrastructure to do so still exceeded anyone else's. And the RN still outnumbered everyone in pre-Dreadnoughts which didn't disappear overnight.

        The Catch-22 was that if the UK didn't build one first someone else probably would. In fact I think the US almost did, but they took longer building it and it still had a triple expansion engine rather than a steam turbine so wasn't the complete Dreadnought package.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    England Expects ... !

    These articles always bring out the Best Of English[sic] armchair warrior comments and dreams of a long gone imperial past.

    Carry On!

    1. TrumpSlurp the Troll Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: England Expects ... !

      I somtimes suspect that the people writing scholarly articles have the same prejudices as those reviewing, say, old British motorbikes or iconic car brands like Lotus.

  25. Scott Marshall
    Pirate

    For those inclined to puns and music ...

    ... may I suggest that the next submarine be called "HMS Depth Leppard"?

    1. Cragganmore

      Re: For those inclined to puns and music ...

      I'd vote for HMS Dick Dastardly...

  26. disgruntled yank Silver badge

    Hate to shock you

    But the US Navy once made a practice of naming its aircraft carriers after battles, so it went into WW II with the Lexington, Saratoga, and Yorktown among them. According to navy.mil, during the course of that war it commissioned the Bunker Hill, Bennington, Princeton, and Cowpens, all battles of the American Revolution.

    1. SkippyBing Silver badge

      Re: Hate to shock you

      Many of those names are now used by their Cruisers. And you can't even blame it on Trump as they were all launched in the 80s/90s

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