‘EXCITING progress’ has been made on the Royal Navy’s second new aircraft carrier, a top officer has said.
Commodore Jim Higham, commander of Portsmouth Naval Base, said the mighty 65,000-tonne HMS Prince of Wales was on schedule to enter the city next year.
The aircraft carrier is currently in the final stages of construction at the dockyard in Rosyth, Scotland, having recently had her operations room switched on for the first time.
Cdre Higham said the arrival of the warship would be a huge moment for the city of Portsmouth and a highlight for his stint in charge of the naval base.
He said: ‘When you look at the future of Portsmouth, it looks vibrant and exciting. The naval base is right at the heart of it with the two aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth this year and Prince of Wales following not far behind next year.’
Speaking of how HMS Prince of Wales’s construction was going, Cdre Higham added: ‘This are going very well. I heard fleet commander saying she is on schedule to come out of Scotland and should be down with us at the turn of next year or the year after.’
The vessel will have a 50-year lifespan and will be based in Portsmouth alongside sister ship HMS Queen Elizabeth.
Cdre Higham has high hopes both the ships will not only be an exciting addition to the Royal Navy but a lucrative one for the city, bringing in tourism and trade.
HMS Prince of Wales is due to leave Rosyth next year and will be commissioned into the navy in 2020.