A new Royal Navy nuclear submarine capable of firing Tomahawk missiles 1,000km has been rolled out of its dockyard to undergo preliminary tests.
The 97-metre long attack sub HMS Audacious was edged from Devonshire Dock Hall in Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, ahead of sea trials expected to take place next year.
The 7,400-tonne BAE Systems-built vessel is the fourth of seven Astute class submarines and is armed with Spearfish torpedoes and Tomahawk land attack missiles.
They were designed to be able to strike at targets up to 1,000km from the coast and are equipped with the latest sonar capability and powered by a nuclear reactor.
Three more Astute class submarines are also being built in Barrow.
Leeds, which was associated for 70 years with a succession of HMS Ark Royals, will be the affiliated city of Audacious.
West Yorkshire’s links with warships go back to Ark Royal III which was “adopted” by Leeds shortly before she was sunk in 1941. The city’s residents raised around £9m to build a replacement, Ark Royal IV, which served for a quarter of a century.
More recently, the city had been associated with the Harrier aircraft carrier, but with her demise following the 2010 defence review, its link to the navy was temporarily broken.
Last November, members of Audacious’ crew visited Leeds United at Elland Road and marched through the city centre during the civic Armistice Day parade.