The Queen officially christened HMS Queen Elizabeth in a ceremony at Rosyth Dockyard in Fife today in true Scottish style…using whisky.
The Royal Navy’s largest warship to date, HMS Queen Elizabeth, was officially named by Her Majesty The Queen today at a ceremony at Rosyth Dockyard in Scotland, where the ship is currently in build.
The Queen was joined at this momentous occasion by Prime Minister David Cameron, military chiefs, and Defence Secretary Philip Hammond, who said: “HMS Queen Elizabeth is the largest ship that the Royal Navy has ever had and is a true demonstration of the UK at its best, with over 10,000 people across the country working together to deliver her.”
Admiral Sir George Zambellas, First Sea Lord, added: “The naming of HMS Queen Elizabeth heralds a new dawn, not only for the Royal Navy but for the delivery of our nation’s security. Powerful, versatile and credible, this ship will be at the heart of the UK’s defence capability for the next 50 years, but she already stands testament to the best of British shipbuilding, engineering and technology.”
At over 55,000 tonnes, HMS Queen Elizabeth is the largest warship ever built in the UK. With a height of 56 metres she is taller than Niagara Falls, and at 280 metres long she has a flight deck the size of 60 tennis courts. The ship also has a range of 10,000 nautical miles, while construction of the ship has sustained around 8,000 jobs at more than 100 companies across the UK.
Although workers from all over the UK have played their part in the ship’s story, as its official ‘birth’ took place in Scotland, it was christened with whisky from Bowmore Distillery, on the island of Islay – the first distillery Her Majesty The Queen ever visited in an official capacity.
This is the first time in 15 years that the Queen has named a warship and it is the second HMS Queen Elizabeth that has been in service in the British navy – the first was the lead ship of the QE-class of dreadnought battleships, named in honour of Queen Elizabeth I, which saw service in both World Wars.
Work is already underway on HMS Queen Elizabeth’s sister ship HMS Prince of Wales, which will start to be assembled in Rosyth Dockyard later this year.
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