BAE Systems has reported a rise in sales and profits in its full financial report for 2015.

Across the company as a whole, operating profit rose from £1.3bn to £1.5bn - while sales increased by £1.3bn to £17.9bn.

Ian King, chief executive, said: “We have delivered another year of solid performance. 

"BAE Systems has a large order backlog generated by a well-balanced portfolio of businesses serving the needs of customers in many of the world’s larger accessible markets. 

"The group is well placed to continue to generate attractive returns for shareholders as defence budgets recover and our commercial adjacencies of cyber and commercial electronics continue to grow.”

The "key highlights" for BAE Systems Submarines in Barrow for 2015 were listed as:

 - Good progress was made on the Astute submarine programme throughout 2015 with the third in class, Artful, beginning sea trials in August. In November she was handed over and accepted by the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and is now in operational service with the Royal Navy. 

 - The MOD awarded a contract for the delivery of the fifth Astute class submarine, taking the total value for work on the vessel to £1.3 billion. The contract covers the design and remaining build, test and commissioning activities on Anson, which is now at an advanced stage of construction and on schedule to leave for sea trials in 2020. 

 - Significant progress was made on the £300m-plus redevelopment of the Barrow site: Construction started on a logistics facility, contracts were placed for the construction of a new manufacturing facility and refurbishment of existing facilities began. 

 - Work on Successor, the programme to replace the Vanguard class, continued with the maturing of the submarine design. In March 2015, the MOD awarded BAE Systems a £257m contract for continuing design work.Earlier this month an additional contract of £201m was awarded by the MOD to further mature the design of Successor.  

- Continued recruitment drive with net headcount growth exceeding 750 in 2015. 

 - Further commitment to early careers with 307 apprentices and 31 graduates joining BAE Systems’ Submarines business.

Tony Johns Tony Johns, managing director of BAE Systems’ Submarines, said: “In November we welcomed the government’s restated commitment to seven Astute class submarines and the replacement of the four Vanguard submarines as part of the Strategic Defence and Security Review.

"We have made good progress on all our major programmes and achieved a number of significant milestones.

"Artful’s exit and subsequent handover to the Royal Navy were particular highlights. 

"Our focus on the Successor programme remains on maturing the design ahead of the start of construction, while the redevelopment of our site in Barrow is progressing well.”