SDSR 2020 – which direction for the Royal Navy?

The new government elected in December 2019 has promised “the biggest review of our defence, security and foreign policy since the end of the Cold War”. In this speculative piece, we examine some of the threats and opportunities for the RN in the coming 2020 Strategic Defence and Security Review.

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Captain Angus Essenhigh

Commanding the carrier – a brief history of HMS Queen Elizabeth’s captains

In January 2020 the 4th seagoing captain of HMS Queen Elizabeth was appointed. As the ship has only been in commission for just over two years and is not yet operational there was some surprise at the high turnover of commanding officers. Here we provide some background and context to the most high profile job in the navy.

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In focus: the Royal Navy presence in the Caribbean

Supporting British Overseas Territories in the Caribbean is a permanent commitment for the Royal Navy which has maintained a presence in the region in various forms for centuries. Here we look at how the modern navy deploys its limited resources to fulfil this task.

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A year in review – the Royal Navy in 2019

In broad terms 2019 was a positive year for the Naval Service, building on the successes of 2018. The political turmoil that enveloped Westminster left significant decisions about the future on hold but, apart from events in the Arabian Gulf, it was mostly business as usual.

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Aircraft carriers, dinosaurs and Max Hastings

In yet another broadside published in The Times from the Royal Navy’s most opinionated critic, Max Hastings has described the new aircraft carriers as “dinosaurs… expensive, impractical and alarmingly vulnerable”. Here we examine Hastings’ pontifications and provide a more balanced view.

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HMS Dauntless Portsmouth

Maintenance problems for the Royal Navy mount up

The delivery of the RN’s second aircraft carrier has deservedly been celebrated as a great success for British industry but behind the scenes, in the naval bases and shipyards, all is not well. 2019 has seen a number of important maintenance projects stalled or delayed. Here we summarise the situation.

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Portsmouth Naval Base – ready to support two aircraft carriers

This week HMS Queen Elizabeth returned home from the Westlant 19 deployment to the US. She joined her sister HMS Prince of Wales alongside in Portsmouth together for the first time. Here we look at the new facilities that will support both aircraft carriers.

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