The UK Defence Journal has learned that the date on which HMS Queen Elizabeth will enter Portsmouth has changed.

Original plans were to see the supercarrier enter Portsmouth on Friday the 18th of August.

820 Naval Air Squadron will be on board HMS Queen Elizabeth as she sails into her homeport this week.

Sir Michael Fallon had earlier said the 70,600 tonne carrier would have a window for entering Portsmouth starting on the 17th, however an anonymous source has confirmed to us in an exclusive that an earlier date of First Entry for HMS Queen Elizabeth into her homeport of Portsmouth is now the target.

“The reason for the date change has not been given, however the window mentioned by Fallon has shifted and she will now be arriving on Wednesday the 16th August on either the morning or evening tide.

If it is the morning tide this will make the likely time she passes Round Tower into Portsmouth Harbour to be 0700. This is expected to have an impact on the planned celebrations however a good view of her is still expected with good weather along Portsmouth Harbour, Old Portsmouth’s walls and Southsea seafront.”

The Royal Navy have now confirmed this news.

“Britain’s new aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth is set to enter her new home in Portsmouth on Wednesday 16 August 2017.

She is now set to make her historic arrival into Portsmouth on Wednesday at approximately 0710 where she will be the latest in a long line of famous Royal Navy ships to call the port home.

Weather conditions meant the exact date of the historic moment could not be confirmed until today.”

HMS Queen Elizabeth is currently making her way South through the Irish Sea.

While the carrier will not host jets during entry as in this CGI, she will host helicopters on deck.

In preparation for HMS Queen Elizabeth becoming operational, more than 60 personnel have been fighting a series of high tempo warfighting challenges as part of a NATO maritime exercise off the coast of Scotland. Embedded within the Nimitz class US carrier USS George H.W. Bush the UK personnel were working with their US counterparts to hone their carrier strike skills ahead of the arrival of the Royal Navy’s new aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth.

CGI of HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales berthed in Portsmouth at a specially constructed jetty.

The war games, called Exercise Saxon Warrior, had seen the Commander of the UK Carrier Strike Group Commodore Andrew Betton and his team direct jets, firepower and personnel across the task group for ten days to ensure full readiness for the UK’s own carrier strike capability.

© UK DEFENCE JOURNAL 2017 – ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

18 COMMENTS

  1. Is it me or has the tempo for all this been raised a bit? She was supposed to do 5 weeks out, 1 week back in and then 5 weeks out again just for trials. But its now just 7 weeks and two of those were in Invergorden. I have been mightily impressed tracking the manoeuvres she has undertaken 24/7 and the speeds are impressive so maybe she is just working dead right ‘out of the box’?

    And she has taken time out to do some PhotEx!

  2. Just looking at the weather for Portsmouth on the BBC, wednesday is light cloud and wind speed 11mph SSW, whereas friday is for light rain showers and wind speed 22mph WSW, so I don’t know if that is a factor in the change of arrival date.

  3. Chris, I thought I read somewhere that she is still due to depart for the second part of her sea trials after some time in Portsmouth for maintenance. Maybe they don’t want to take any chances docking her in Rosyth again so soon if it isn’t necessary.

    • clive – Could well be right. But after commissioning ships normally go straight to FOST after weapon fit. The way she is performing (and I am sure this particular skipper has had a huge amount to do with it) I wouldn’t be surprised if she does that and heads straight to Norfolk VA to embark F-35s.
      Whatever its just a great time to be anyone who wants the very best for our lads and lasses.

  4. But how accurate is this information, just how reliable is it ?

    Hundreds of thousands of £’sssssss now wasted on hotels and travel plans, time off work, ect ect

    They want the British Public to buy into the costs and needs of these two carriers, so when 250,000 are expected to see her arrive on Friday, they pull this stunt ….

    Thats if its true of course

  5. As she appears to be taking the western route around the coast, I hope she turns up in Weymouth Bay, so close to Portland, a historic place for naval aviation & seafaring. Incidentally, Portland is a regular base for RFA’s & has had new moles constructed, apparently for cruise ships, but coincidental with the construction of the carriers.

  6. not the most handsomest aircraft carrier but I sure we will all wish her well any idea of time at the Nab Tower

  7. Its 14:23 Tuesday and she is doing circles off the Isle of Wight. Next High Tide is after 5 PM. Just in time for the 6 o’clock news ….

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