BARROW'S MP has criticised the Labour party in a row over whether defence projects like the Dreadnought submarine programme can be delivered on time.

Labour blasted the Government after an official report found there were 'significant issues' with delivering the Barrow-built submarines on time and on budget.

Shadow defence secretary John Healey said the Ministry of Defence was 'failing British taxpayers and with threats increasing, risks leaving our armed forces without the equipment they need to fulfil our Nato obligations'.

He repeated pledges to conduct a full audit of MoD 'waste' if Labour were in government.

A government audit rated the programme's progress as amber, meaning 'successful delivery appears feasible but significant issues already exist, requiring management attention'.

It said if the issues 'appear resolvable at this stage and, if addressed promptly, should not present a cost/schedule overrun'.

The submarines, which will carry the county's nuclear deterrent, are due to enter service in the early 2030s. The first two boats are under construction at the shipyard. 

Barrow's Conservative MP Simon Fell has hit back at Labour.

He said: "Frankly it should come as no surprise that less than a week after the Defence Secretary said that the future of the Royal Navy may be in Barrow-built submarines, that the Labour Party has come out against further defence spending.

"At the Commissioning of Anson last week, the Australian Deputy PM and Australian defence chiefs looked on in awe at the work that goes on in Barrow’s shipyard.

"What message does this send from Labour? How does this possibly help Barrow and the skilled jobs that are there? It doesn’t.

"This isn’t the first time of course: Sir Keir refused to back AUKUS and the opportunities that offers, and eight of the front bench voted against renewing Trident altogether.

"They may have a new leader, but it’s clear that their support for the programme of work in the shipyard is only skin deep."

A MoD spokesman said: “A project being rated as red or amber does not necessarily mean that it will not be delivered on time or to budget, but that we have identified risks that need managing. We see this as effective programme management.”