04 Jul 2014

UK’s largest warship named by Queen

Summary: The Queen has officially names the new 65,000-tonne HMS Queen Elizabeth – the first of two new Royal Navy aircraft carriers being built.

PM David Cameron said it was a “very proud day” for Scotland and the UK.

The warship – the largest ever built in and for the UK – is as long as 25 buses and can carry 40 jets and helicopters at a time.

The vessel will be manned by just 679 individuals, similar to its predecessor the HMS Invincible, despite the new ship being much larger in size. The crew will have a GPS system to help them find their way around the massive ship.

Six shipyards in the UK including Tyne, Rosyth and Appledore have been involved in building parts of the carrier.

More than 10,000 people in more than 100 companies have worked on HMS Queen Elizabeth, which has been beset by construction and design delays.

The final cost of the vessel and its sister ship is £6.2bn, well over the initial projected cost of £3.65bn.

The vessel will not actually be in full service for another six years, in 2020, as the F-35B fighter jets which will eventually be housed on the vessel have also been hit my delays and overspend, after the UK Government changed their plans last minute, causing headaches for the US suppliers of the aircraft.