First home arrival of the largest-ever warship in the Royal Navy

The largest warship on Royal Navy service – HMS Queen Elizabeth – entered Portsmouth homeport for the first time. The huge aircraft carrier (71,650 t) welcomed by big crowds and fly show of Fleet Air Arm Wildcat while being passed through by Portsmouth's Round Tower, guided with a team of special tugs.

First home arrival of the largest-ever warship in the Royal Navy

The warship reached its new berth at Princess Royal Jetty at Her Majesty's Naval Base Portsmouth. It constructed to provide the place for the huge $3.8 billion carrier and a sister ship, HMS Prince of Wales, which is now equipped at Rosyth. The project of the new berth and its infrastructure required $128 million investment.

First home arrival of the largest-ever warship in the Royal Navy

First home arrival of the largest-ever warship in the Royal Navy

The berth and channel were deepened to allow entering of such carriers, taking away 113 million cu ft of the bottom. Notably, the dredging helped to discover many artifacts of the harbor, including human skulls. Everything was transferred to the local police department.
HMS Queen Elizabeth returned to the Portsmouth after a number of sea tests of operating and combat systems and carried the first helicopter landing.

First home arrival of the largest-ever warship in the Royal Navy

During its way back, the warship met the cruise liner Queen Elizabeth and NATO ship group with the USS George H W Bush in the lead. Bush allocated some of the 120 aircrew of Queen Elizabeth training the US Navy in handling the 11 F-35 Lightning II strike fighters, that in tandem with four Crowsnest helicopters represents the addition to the British ship’s – deck trials on Queen Elizabeth are to start next year.

First home arrival of the largest-ever warship in the Royal Navy

"HMS Queen Elizabeth's first entry into her home port of Portsmouth is a historic, proud and exciting occasion, not only for those of us serving in her but also for the wider Royal Navy, the city of Portsmouth and the entire nation," says Captain Jerry Kyd, Commanding Officer of HMS Queen Elizabeth. "The UK's future flagship, as well her sister ship HMS Prince of Wales, will be powerful symbols of Britain's outward facing global character and ambition. The Royal Navy has a very special relationship with Portsmouth dating back half a millennium and both carriers will ensure the Navy's city remains the focal point of our great nation's maritime power for generations to come."

First home arrival of the largest-ever warship in the Royal Navy
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