Maritime and Coastguard Agency

Delivering a next-generation mission critical network, supporting HM Coastguard to protect lives at sea

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) work to prevent the loss of life on the coast and at sea. Governed by the Department for Transport, MCA produce legislation and guidance on maritime matters, and provide certification to seafarers. As part of MCA, HM Coastguard provide the frontline emergency response including search and rescue services around the UK’s coast.

Telent’s relationship with the MCA extends back over 10 years through the provision of maintenance of radio equipment at HM Coastguard remote radio sites and the delivery of additional support services. In the summer of 2020 Telent secured a new ten-year agreement with the MCA to design, build and operate a next-generation mission critical network.

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The new network will connect 165 remote radio sites situated around 11,000 miles of UK coastline, replacing the existing legacy infrastructure with a combination of full-fibre and microwave technology. These radio sites carry communications, via three network data centres, between vessels at sea and 10 HM Coastguard Operation Centres.

The project to design and build the new network is well underway and will be provided by Telent as a fully managed service to MCA. This will include monitoring and managing end-to-end performance, planning and carrying out maintenance activities and conducting technical changes and updates. The fibre-based network will enable MCA to undertake its own digital transformation, deliver new digital services and communication capabilities, and bring a new edge to the search and rescue work of HM Coastguard.


We are investing £175 million into this new national radio network, which is central in preventing the loss of life on the coast and at sea. At a time when getting outdoors is pivotal to people’s mental health and wellbeing, it is essential that we can provide reassurance that we are here to respond to any emergency they may find themselves in, and this new network will enhance our ability to do that


- Damien Oliver

Commercial and Programmes Director for the Maritime and Coastguard Agency

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