Warship’s arrival will signal a new chapter

Chris Hayward is presented with a certificate by Captain Andy Jordan at HMS Collingwood after 42 years' service with the navy Picture: Keith Woodland

Navy employee retires after 42 years

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WHEN packing for Scotland, one must consider the weather.

That was one of the things I and many others at yesterday’s naming of HMS Queen Elizabeth will take away from the event, which carried on regardless of the wind and rain and rightly so.

Another is the fact the aircraft carrier’s arrival in Portsmouth in 2017 will signal a new chapter for both the Royal Navy and for the city.

But the parade put on ahead of Her Majesty’s arrival was also a showcase of why the United Kingdom is so special — and how our armed forces are helping to keep our traditions alive.

Aside from the rain, and the blasting Scottish pipes, the hour-and-a-half-long parade and flypasts added to the immense feeling of pride that was surely felt by all of the workers involved.

And there have been a lot of them — 10,000 people 
have been involved in getting the ship to where it is 
now.

The numbers speak volumes about how large the project is.

And although it is another three years’ time before we see her enter Portsmouth Harbour, yesterday’s event has proved she is definitely worth waiting for.

Come rain or shine, we should wave our flags high and welcome Queen Elizabeth with open arms.