HMS Daring, the first of the Royal Navy's $10 billion fleet of six Type 45 Destroyers, was launched into the River Clyde in Glasgow on February 1. Weighing 7,350 tons, Daring's launch - on time and within budget - is seen as a symbol of rebirth in the Clydeside shipbuilding yards which faced devastation six years ago. Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, launched Daring at a ceremony at the shipyard in Scotstoun which was also attended by the Defense Secretary, John Reid. HMS Daring slid into the water and was maneuvered into place by three tugs, who guided her a few hundred yards down river to a dry dock where the finishing touches will be carried out, including the fitting of her guns. The second and third ships in the six-ship order - HMS Dauntless, Diamond, Defender, Dragon and Duncan - are already being built. BAE Systems hopes the order will be extended to eight. The contract will keep about 3,000 workers employed until the end of the decade at Scotstoun and its sister yard Govan, across the river.
(Source: Times Online UK)