The normal operating cycle of every warship includes periods of lower readiness, typically for maintenance or refit. It is not our practice to comment on matters relating to specific readiness levels of individual ships, as to do so could enable deductions to be made that could be prejudicial to national security.
The only relevant instance of withdrawing ships from service without one-for-one replacements has arisen from the decision not to purchase further Type 45 destroyers beyond the six already on order. Hence eight Type 42 destroyers will be replaced by six Type 45s. However, the decision not to purchase the seventh and eighth Type 45s will not achieve any savings in production costs in 2008-09 or 2009-10.