Protests over shipbuilding cuts

Around 200 demonstrators have held a rally over BAE Systems' decision to cut 940 jobs at its Portsmouth site, ending centuries of shipbuilding in the city.

View all 30 updates ›

Portsmouth council: Political motives behind closure

The leader of Portsmouth City Council has said the decision to shut down the city's shipyard, which is the only one in England able to build advanced surface warships, smacks of politics.

The remaining yards with the capability to build advanced warships are in Scotland, and the referendum on Scottish independence is less than one year away. Ministers have put the defence of the UK and the future of the Navy at real risk.

– Council leader Gerald Vernon-Jackson

Portsmouth Conservative councillor Alistair Thompson added: "Many of those who I represent as a councillor are hugely concerned that this decision has been taken for political reasons because of the referendum in Scotland next year."

More on this story