HMS Queen Elizabeth at anchor June 2019

HMS Queen Elizabeth prepares to sail despite COVID-19 crisis

(UPDATED) HMS Queen Elizabeth will leave Portsmouth for another period of training next week but it was announced on 23rd April that her departure will be delayed by a few days while the entire ship’s company is tested for COVID-19. At a time when aircraft carriers in other navies have experienced widespread infection amongst their crews, we look at the rationale for sailing and the measures taken by the RN to mitigate risks to its personnel.

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HMS Dragon Type 45 Destroyer Royal Navy

Type 45 destroyer availability improving

Poor availability of the Type 45 destroyers has been a source of frustration for the navy and attracted plenty of negative, and often ill-informed media coverage over the last decade. Measures to remedy the complex issues have been on-going for several years and there are now real signs of progress. The Defence Secretary has announced that from 2021, four of the six ships will be available for tasking and the varying levels of readiness will continue to improve.

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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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Up close with HMS Prince of Wales as the Royal Navy’s second aircraft carrier arrives in Portsmouth

On 16th November the second of the Royal Navy’s aircraft carriers, HMS Prince of Wales entered her home port for the first time. We witnessed the ship’s arrival and went on board to find out more about her progress and future programme.

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Minister tells head of the Royal Navy to make increasing warship availability a priority

Secretary of State for Defence, Ben Wallace made his first appearance before the House of Commons Defence Select Committee on Wednesday 23rd October. In a generally impressive and honest performance, he answered a wide range of questions, mainly about naval matters.

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HMS Prince of Wales Rosyth

Dry docking the Royal Navy’s aircraft carriers – what are the options?

The two Queen Elizabeth Class (QEC) aircraft carriers will require dry-docking periodically throughout their lives. The dry docks at Portsmouth and Devonport naval bases are not large enough to accommodate them so the RN must choose between a very limited selection of other UK facilities. Here we examine some of the options.

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