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Berths suitable for nuclear powered warships are split into two categories, X and Z berths. An X-berth is an operational Naval base or a building and refitting yard whilst a Z-berth is a location deemed suitable by the Defence Nuclear Safety Committee for operational visits or stand offs by nuclear powered warships. The Ministry of Defence state that Z-berths in Scotland are often used for operational and recreational purposes. In 1995, there were 17 Z-berths in Scotland suitable for nuclear powered warships but today that figure has fallen to 6, with 2 X-berths. The 16 berths were at:

· Broadford Bay in Skye
· Brodick Bay in Arran
· Campbeltown Loch
· Coulport, Loch Long
· Dales Voe, Shetland
· Dalgety Bay, Fife
· Firth of Forth
· Glenmallan, Loch Long
· Holy Loch
· Lerwick Harbour, Shetland
· Loch Ewe (2)
· Loch Goil
· Loch Striven
· Portree, Skye.
· Raasay
· Rothesay, Isle of Bute

Today, the remaining Z-berths are those at Broadford Bay, Coulport, Loch Ewe, Loch Goil, and Rothesay. The X-berths are at Faslane and Rosyth.
The only Z berths in England and Wales are at Plymouth Sound, Spithead, Southampton, Cardiff and Liverpool

A Z-berth can either be a jetty like the one pictured below, or a mooring buoy, usually yellow.

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