Annual Report and Accounts 2021/22

Supporting the future of navigation

In an ever-changing world, our oceans are under increasing pressure with advances in technology, busier seas and pressing environmental challenges. Our experts support safer navigation across the globe by providing hydrographic understanding to inform maritime decisions on ship and shore.

A global centre of hydrographic understanding


We work together with a wide range of organisations to source, process and publish hydrographic and marine geospatial data, from seabed to surface. Supporting others to make the best use of our oceans in safer, secure and more sustainable ways. 

Working as an executive agency of the Ministry of Defence, we play a leading role in providing expert advice on seabed mapping, safe navigation, and marine geospatial data. We provide support for government and public bodies to deliver better outcomes on a range of policy areas, as well as our public task, which includes fulfilling the UK government's Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) obligations. 


Peter Sparkes, UKHO Chief Executive, discusses how we've achieved our goals in the last financial year.

Highlights of the year


We have undertaken a range of activities during our financial year 2021/22, from attending international events such as COP26, to the beta release of our innovative ADMIRALTY Digital Delivery Service - ADDS.

View a few of our highlights below.

The future of navigation


As a global centre of hydrographic understanding and as experts in our field, we consistently strive to set and raise global standards for hydrography and bathymetry.

We harness the latest advances in data science and digital technologies to advance our discovery of the oceans. We’re using this knowledge and expertise, in collaboration with partners, to develop innovative solutions which will shape the future of navigation.

Shipping is facing era-defining challenges. We’re exploring how we can embrace new technologies to meet the evolving needs of international shipping in minimising carbon emissions and realising operational efficiencies, whilst still ensuring safety at sea.

Our work is underpinned by our people, who are central to our organisation and achieving our future vision. We are becoming a truly digital organisation, developing our people and equipping ourselves with the skills required for a leading organisation in a digital world.

And as shipping is striving for decarbonisation, our organisation is doing the same. We will be carbon neutral by 2030, Net Zero by 2050, and will develop a costed roadmap to achieve this during 2022/23.

UK Hydrographic Office Annual Report and Accounts for 2021 to 2022

The UKHO is an executive agency and operates as a trading fund within the Ministry of Defence. Our annual report is published and laid to Parliament. This includes a full financial overview of the UKHO, and our achievements over the last year.