This is what will happen next to HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales

Portsmouth now has two Royal Navy carriers docked in its naval base after HMS Queen Elizabeth arrived in the city.

Saturday, 16th November 2019, 5:07 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th December 2019, 12:16 pm

The two carriers are now docked side by side, but what will happen to them next?

Here’s what we know about what the next few months hold for HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales:

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HMS Queen Elizabeth arrives into Portsmouth dock this morning. HMS Prince of Wales can be seen alongside (behind). Picture:Morten Watkins/Solent News & Photo Agency

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HMS Queen Elizabeth: Royal Navy carrier docks in Portsmouth alongside HMS Prince...

What happens next to HMS Queen Elizabeth?

We cannot be sure how long both ships will sit side-by-side at Portsmouth Naval Base.

What we do know, is that HMS Queen Elizabeth's first operational deployment is pencilled for 2021.

HMS Prince of Wales arriving into Portsmouth last month. Picture: Tom Cotterill

Both aircraft carriers will surely come and go before that point as they prepare for Royal Navy action.

However, you can reasonably expect neither ship will leave Portsmouth before Christmas.

What happens next to HMS Prince of Wales?

The carrier will remain in Portsmouth until next year, and will be officially commissioned into the Royal Navy next week.

Prince Charles will be joined by his wife the Duchess of Cornwall at Portsmouth Naval Base on December 10 for a commissioning ceremony.

We have no concrete dates of when HMS Prince of Wales will head out to sea, but she is likely to depart briefly next year to stretch her sea legs.

She will also undertake her sea trials, which like HMS Queen Elizabeth could include a trip to America.

When will HMS Prince of Wales enter active service?

The second Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier is scheduled to enter active service and be ready for front-line duties around the globe from 2023.