HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH: Theresa May visits navy’s new warship

Picture: Malcolm Wells

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PRIME minister Theresa May is in Portsmouth today to see the Royal Navy’s new aircraft carrier.

The PM was flown into the city this morning to witness the historic homecoming.

HMS Queen Elizabeth arrives in her home port of Portsmouth Harbour for the first time Picture: Steve Reid/Blitz Photography

HMS Queen Elizabeth arrives in her home port of Portsmouth Harbour for the first time Picture: Steve Reid/Blitz Photography

Amid heightened security, she was taken through Portsmouth Naval Base before stepping onto the new warship.

She is due to be given a tour of the 65,000-tonne supercarrier as well as meeting the ship’s company before giving a speech inside.

It comes after thousands of people witnessed the moment the aircraft carrier passed through the narrow harbour entrance this morning.

People cheered and passenger ferries blasted their horns as the ship came through. Fireworks were also set off from Old Portsmouth.

A flyby of helicopters soared over the behemoth as she made her way through the city’s historic port.

All the ship’s 700-strong crew stood on the flight deck of the mighty new warship as she was guided through the harbour.

Dozens of family members and friends watching from the naval base cheered, with children waving flags and banners.

Among them was Yhamel Osborne, of Portchester.

The 41-year-old was waiting to wave in her husband Andrew, who is a Leading Hand in Queen Elizabeth’s aviation department.

She said: ‘I’m going to be 42 on Monday so this is my birthday wish come true. We have been married 16 years but he has only ever made our anniversary once because he has been away.

‘He will make our 16th anniversary so it’s amazing. I’m so happy.’

Close to her was proud mum Caroline Robinson, 50, who was waiting for her son Joshua Robinson to sail into Portsmouth’s harbour.

With her was her husband Geoff and Joshua’s girlfriend, Heather Bisby.

Caroline said: ‘Today has been amazing. We’re so proud of him. We haven’t seen him since May and it was his 24th birthday on Sunday so we’re looking forward to celebrating that.’

She was also taken aback by the size of the navy’s new warship.

‘Joshua has served on board HMS Dauntless before - Queen Elizabeth is so much larger, she is enormous.’

Heather, who is also in the navy, said she was envious of Joshua’s role on the ship.

‘I wish I was on it,’ she said. ‘I have been stuck in Pompey for two years while he has been in Scotland and America. It’s a different world.’

HMS Queen Elizabeth arrived with five Merlin helicopters from 820 Naval Air Squadron which landed last night.

The helicopters are due to fly from the ship at 10am.