Commodore Stephen Moorhouse has assumed command of the UK’s second aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales, currently under construction in Rosyth, Scotland.
Moorhouse will take up the local rank of captain during his command, just as his counterpart Commodore Jerry Kyd did on board the first of the Royal Navy’s new aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth.
“I am delighted to assume command of HMS Prince of Wales at this exciting time as we prepare the ship to enter service,” commented Captain Moorhouse. “She will operate of the centre of a Maritime Task Group that will support the UK’s diverse diplomatic, security and economic interests around the globe.”
The 65,000-tonne carrier is currently being fit-out in preparation for active duty as her sister ship HMS Queen Elizabeth visits the United States for the first time.
Captain Moorhouse relieves Captain Ian Groom who spent more than two years leading the engineering charge on board HMS Prince of Wales. This hand-over from an Engineering Senior Naval Officer to a Warfare Commanding Officer marks another major milestone in the carrier’s lengthy build programme.
Captain Moorhouse originally joined the Royal Navy as a specialist in Airborne Early Warning, serving as an observer with 849 Naval Air Squadron – primarily on board the last generation carrier HMS Illustrious – and flying in environments from the southern Indian Ocean to the Baltic.
Rear Admiral K E Blount said: “I am extremely grateful to Captain Groom for his dedication, hard work and all he has achieved. As her sister ship prepares for the first F-35B landing, HMS Prince of Wales continues to achieve some very important milestones and the recent completion of the Bridge and Operations Room has really brought this magnificent ship to life.
“The appointment of her first Commanding Officer is a significant step on the journey to sea trials next year and I extend a warm welcome to Captain Moorhouse.”
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