Military

Britain's second supercarrier christened

Britain's second supercarrier ...
HMS Prince of Wales is the second ship of the Queen Elizabeth class
HMS Prince of Wales is the second ship of the Queen Elizabeth class
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The Duchess of Cornwall pressing the button to release the bottle of whisky used to christen HMS Prince of Wales
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The Duchess of Cornwall pressing the button to release the bottle of whisky used to christen HMS Prince of Wales
HMS Prince of Wales is the second ship of the Queen Elizabeth class
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HMS Prince of Wales is the second ship of the Queen Elizabeth class

Britain's second giant aircraft carrier took a major step today from being a collection of steel to active warship, as she was formally christened at the Rosyth shipyard. In a ceremony dating back centuries, the Duchess of Cornwall pressed a button to release a bottle of 10-year-old whisky to break against the hull of the 65,000-tonne (71,650-ton) vessel.

The audience at the hour-long christening included the ship's commander Captain Steve Moorhouse, Britain's oldest sailor, the Prince of Wales, the ship's company, the builders, and surviving veterans from the previous Prince of Wales, which was a King George V-class battleship sunk by Japanese bombers in 1941.

Though now formally named, HMS Prince of Wales will be spending at least six months at No. 1 drydock while being fitted out, and her crew trained in her operation and maintenance. According to the Royal Navy, it took 51 million man hours to assemble the 17 million parts that make up one of the two largest ships ever built for the Navy.

The Duchess of Cornwall pressing the button to release the bottle of whisky used to christen HMS Prince of Wales
The Duchess of Cornwall pressing the button to release the bottle of whisky used to christen HMS Prince of Wales

Her sister ship, HMS Queen Elizabeth, recently completed sea trials before arriving at her new homeport at Portsmouth. Both carriers are expected to enter full service early in the next decade when their F-35b fighter planes and aircrews are ready to take to sea. However, it's hoped that lessons learned from building the Queen Elizabeth will speed up the commissioning process.

"Wherever Prince of Wales travels – at home or overseas – she will draw crowds to the water's edge where they will marvel at your achievement," said First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Philip Jones.

Source: Royal Navy

4 comments
toddzrx
"Supercarrier"? I don't know about that. Definitely shorter (lengthwise) and significantly lighter than even a current Nimitz class. Less personnel and aircraft too.
StefanSchmidt
I bet those surviving veterans form the first Prince of Wales that was sunk in 1941 were proud as hell that their ship wasn't even christened by a genuine Royal but by home wrecker Camilla Parker-Bowles.
Marco Gonzalez
@toddzrx "supercarrier" to the british. It is the biggest ship they have built for they navy.
JimFox
Rejecting EMALS and AAG looks like a wise decision- GR Ford is having extreme problems with both systems, EMALS especially. F35B plus Ski-Jump may be a huge compromise but things could have been far worse. Nonetheless, these ships are obsolescent, designed for a purpose no longer likely in the aftermath of the Falklands debacle. The military strategists need to take terrorism more seriously & design countermeasures as a higher priority. 70,000 ton behemoths with aircraft they can't afford [if they ever arrive] are not the proportionate response to AK47's & Toyota pickups with machine guns, rockets or anti-tank missiles...