A new Dreadnought class nuclear missile submarine will be named after the Queens father, King George VI.

This name has never been used before by the Royal Navy.

King George (then known as Prince Albert) had been enrolled in the Royal Naval College at Osborne House at the age of thirteen. In September 1913 he was commissioned as a Midshipman on board HMS Collingwood, and he was serving on this ship during the fighting at Jutland, as he describes here. Prince Albert is the only British Sovereign to have seen action in battle since William IV. Read more about this here. https://www.royal.uk/king-george-vis-then-prince-albert-account-battle-jutland

The Dreadnought class will replace the Vanguard class submarines from 2028 onwards and will host the United Kingdom’s nuclear deterrent.

Government approved initial gate for the Dreadnought submarine programme to replace the the Vanguard class in May 2011.

While details remain sketchy at best regarding the Dreadnought class, one of the key features the new boats will have is a Common Missile Compartment (CMC). CMC aims to define the missile tubes and accompanying systems that would be used to launch new ballistic missiles, successors to the current Trident II/ D5 missile fleet used by the USA and Britain.

The 2010 Strategic Defence and Security Review stated the submarine will have eight operational missiles, carrying no more than 40 operational warheads between them.

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Gavin Gordon

Queen Elizabeth, Prince of Wales, King George the VI; the Royals are on a marketing drive – Harry Hotspur next?


Hey but didn’t you know that two of those are not at all named after the present monarch and her son. Of course there have been no previous ships called George Vl that they could use for that line of defence so they have been up front about it, although I am sure our present Monarch is working hard to try it on with the Elizabeth Line at the moment in terms of muddying who it refers to. To be fare why shouldn’t he have one named after him considering his role in WW2 he deserves it as much as… Read more »

Gavin Gordon

Indeed, was aware of ‘its not us really’ quote – but then along comes HRH’s dad!


Actually that is not exactly true. When the KGV battleship class of 1940 were built the fist ship was to be called KGVI, however the then king requested that it be named after his father KGV. In return the Admiralty to honor the king then named the third ship Duke of York which was the Kings title before he came to the throne. Some could say that the Royals are on a marketing drive yet the Royal Navy is different from the other arms of the armed forces in that they are not created by Parliamentary statute but by Royal… Read more »


HMS Meghan Sparkles won’t be far off now she has dropped one.

steve mcqueen

Join the discussion…

Geoffrey Hicking

An excellent name!


While I approve of the name, wasn’t the theme of the class supposed to be names with historical resonance? I can’t help but feel that Churchill (to keep the pattern of naming the class after the first 4 British nuclear subs) or Conqueror (as the only nuclear submarine to sink a warship, plus the history of the name in the RN) would’ve been more appropriate.


Good point I do like the naming of a class of ships to stick as close as possible to the given theme. Otherwise only really magnifies the overall lack of ships to name.

Alan Reid

Hi Callum, I think there is a historical connection (or resonance) between all four names. Dreadnought, Valiant & Warspite are strongly associated with the Grand Fleet of WW1, and King George (then Prince Albert) served on the battleship HMS Collingwood at the Battle of Jutland.
I think it’s an inspired choice, and looking forward to a KGVI in the fleet!


That’s a very tenuous link, if it is at all. Especially since Dreadnought wasn’t actually at Jutland. When the RN says they’re using ship names with historical resonance, you tend to think they mean the ship’s themselves. Dreadnought and Warspite, for example, have legacies going back to the English Navy before the Royal Navy officially became an institution. KGVI is a fine name, but next to that sort of pedigree it seems out of place.


I agree Callum, I think they should have called it Ark Royal, a name going back centuries the same as Dreadnought and Warspite, or if it is going to be named after someone, Nelson, Britain’s greatest naval hero ever.
Still, I’m sure they had their reasons, and I am more than happy we have a Dreadnought and a Warspite back in the fleet.

Alan Reid

Hi Callum, Thanks for “dissing” my historical link; I was rather pleased with it too! LOL
Incidentally, Dreadnought was in the Grand Fleet – rammed & sank a U-Boat in 1915. KGVI also follows in the tradition of the venerable KGV battleship of WW2 fame.
But maybe it’s also important to build some new traditions ………..


I don’t like these royal names, prefer fights names myself. Hms rape and pillage, Hms don’t mess with me names.


In a way I would have preferred this one (at least its new) to the other two who seem to be having everything named after them over the years as one heads towards the end of her reign and the other to the beginning of his, smacks of marketing to me. It just appears sycophantic and rather patronising of the people actually with elitist thinking that its the only thing the powers that be can think of to use to bring us together as if we are all still monarchists at heart. Hardly indicative of a modern nation striving to… Read more »

Mr Anderson

What are you referring to, the names of the carriers? They aren’t named after the current monarch or her son.


HMS Queen Elizabeth is named after the Battleship HMS Queen Elizabeth from WW1 and WW2…which was named after Queen Elizabeth I.

HMS Prince of Wales is named after the Battleship HMS Prince of Wales from WW2…

andy reeves

hms alfred the great?

Steve Martin

I was thinking over this the other day, HMS Pegasus would be a nice touch both for the history and battle of import aspect (9 ships have held the name + Pegasus Bridge).

Daniele Mandelli

Pegasus Bridge…. Major Howard. One of my heroes. Was it the 1994 anniversary when he was wheeled across the Bridge on the Orne in his wheelchair, surrounded by Para’s and thousands of well wishers?

I have no shame in admitting I balled my eyes out seeing that…


And the man who played him in the film was a paratrooper. Richard Todd. He himself landed on D Day and relieved the bridge. Quite amazing. Have a lot of to.e for actor Richard Todd.

On topic… The 2nd carrier should have been called KGVI…


Looking at the UK’s political landscape today with the potentially rapid growth in Green/environmental and independent parties, none of which, would support the building of these ships, it looks more likely that the UK deterrent renewal is in for a very rocky ride? Sadly, the conventional weapons won’t be immune from scrutiny either.

Barry Larking

If Corbyn becomes Prime Minister the U.K. nuclear deterrent will be history.


Exactly, Corbyn will align with the SNP and between them, the whole programme will grind to a halt. Just as worrying, the Liberal Democrats won’t be too keen to support the retain lobby either. The only political force capable of delivering the Dreadnought is a ‘New Labour’ type Labour Government or the Conservatives. Both could be dying breeds in the new wave of British politics, where a whole melange of disparate parties could hold power. Ironically, we are departing the EU due in part to the veto system, that has an inability to respond to even the smallest of legislation… Read more »


Finally. I’ve always thought that Britain’s wartime king richly deserved a ship named for him. He did an admirable job for someone thrust into the role…


Daniele Mandelli

Don’t like the name, and I’m a proud Monarchist too.

Needs to be more menacing for these most deadly of assets.


HMS “Nuke EM” !? 😀


Daniele Mandelli


The flavour of the current 4 fit nicely for me. Vanguard, Victorious, and especially the last two, Vigilant and Vengeance.

Does exactly what it says on the tin ( A UK TV ad you may not be aware of )

Alex T

HMS Singed Beard of Cadiz? Now that would go down well in Gib,

Gavin Gordon

Must be ‘even prouder’ monarchists out there, Daniele. Any comments that do not stand ridgidly to attention get down voted, evidently.

Daniele Mandelli

There must be!


Im not a fan of that name at all. Needs to be far more succinct, HMS King George VI doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue, doesn’t do anything at all for me as a name. Far better options could have been looked at.

Steve Taylor

Well no perhaps not no. She will probably end up being referred to in service as ‘KG6’ in similar fashion to how King George V was called ‘KG5’.


I’m not a fan of that name at all. Needs to be far more succinct. HMS King George VI doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue. Far better options could have been looked at.

Alan Reid

Hi Matt, I dunno – I think KGVI is quite succinct, and rather cool.


A name that should have been reserved for a third QE class carrier :))

..Not suitable for a RN bomber.

Steve Taylor

Bombers get names of battleships. So entirely suitable.


Do I understand this right, only 8 missiles, down from the current 16?


No, the reduction to is to 12 tubes (whether they will all be filled when on patrol is another matter, but the option is there).

It should be noted that the new US SSBN’s are also reducing their missile tubes from 24 to 16.


That you Mac


Maybe also worth noting that each missile can carry up to 8 individually targeted warheads (Multiple Independent Reentry Vehicles) for a potential max of 96 but, as Mac said, how many tubes would be full is a good question let alone ever sailing with all 12 tubes full each carrying a missile with its full complement of 8 warheads. The warheads separate from the missile pretty much at the top of the ballistic trajectory so they have plenty of time to fan out and a MIRV payload could easily target 8 separate English cities e.g. from London to Newcastle I… Read more »


I was hoping for HMS Nukie McNukeface


I was thinking HMS Don’t press that red button…oh fuck.


When they initially said that the names would be of historical significance, I assumed that the fourth boat would be named along the lines of ‘Resolution’, ‘Bellerophon’, ‘Conqueror’, or maybe ‘Indefatigable’ – all names with some significance for various reasons in the RN. That said, I am pleased to see this name used. It is, after all, only right we honour King George VI in this manner, particularly due to his ties with the Navy and due to the fact that he hasn’t been honoured before. Whilst I agree it would have been appropriate for a third carrier, it is… Read more »


Bellerophon or Thunderer would have been great names to be re-used.

Gavin Gordon

Yep, HMS Indefatigable would definately answer – links surface vessel that became a subsurface vessel at Jutland – neat.


Much the same as the Dreadnought of 1660, the Vanguard’s of both 1869 and 1909, the Vigilant’s of 1774 and 1806, the Audacious of 1912, and the Agamemnon of 1781? All of these names are now used for planned or commissioned submarines. Your tongue in cheek comments are unnecessary and unsubstantiated. Ships often draw on names from the past, in some cases honouring their service and in others honouring their loss. The previous Indefatigable had a distinguished service during the final years of the Second World War, particularly in the Pacific. The Indefatigable lost at Jutland also served at some… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

Lol, that name “Indefatigable” is actually already used by the MoD today at a little known establishment in Wales!

Daniele Mandelli

Love your knowledge on naval history Lusty.


Appreciated, though I must commend you for your knowledge on land-based installations and formations. Learn something new every day.

Levi Goldsteinberg

The last Emperor. KGVI is a name that should have been used long ago; I’m pleased to see it’s finally seen the light of day


I think you have hit on the way it will be referred to in future. ‘KGVI’

Frederick Speight

I would much preferred the name to have been given to a third aircraft carrier.

Jerry Frisque

Actually, naming a fourth carrier for His Late Majesty would work too.


On subject-some useless information. There is a hotel in Canada called the Prints of Whales liberally decorated with pics of these creatures!
HMS Queen Elizabeth’s ship’s crest has the Tudor colours from which are derived the modern flag of WALES. HMS Prince of Wales has a ship’s crest dominated by the St George’s Cross of ENGLAND!
We are often enormously confused by the symbols of the United Kingdom…!!

colin Watts

HMS Fearless. Would have been right on the money.


Really? I’d describe myself as a Monarchist but we’ve already got two capital ships named after Royals, something different would have been nice.

Levi Goldsteinberg

Prince of Wales is a title, Queen Elizabeth is named after a dreadnought. KGVI is the only one named after a person

Nigel Collins

I have a funny feeling we’re going to require more of these along with additional Astutes!

“China on faster pace to develop nuclear triad, according to Pentagon, analysts”


Booorriiinggg,should have been called the Hood a proper name for a capital ship.


The government are being savvy naming these ships after royals. Makes them less likely to get cancelled QE, PoW is referred to as Charles, now we have KGIV. Churchill is arguably more polarizing than royals, in the current climate.

David Deakin

What a singularly inappropriate name for a Dreadnought Class SSBN – KG VI. Eminently more suitable for these four boats would be IMPLACABLE, INDOMITABLE, INDEFATIGABLE and IMPLACABLE. As with the chosen names for our two “Jump Jet” carriers, perhaps the RN Names Committee are susceptible to guidance from a superior authority!

steve mcqueen CPOMEMSM rtd

Thought that Conqueror might have been but a bit of a political time bomb and Courageous looks like remaining the full time museum. A good choice.

Jerry Frisque

As an American, I would like to take the opportunity to offer my congratulations on two separate naval matters. First, HMS King George VI sounds about as Majestic as it can get, even if its long overdue. On a second unrelated matter; here is a tip of my cap to the memory of the Officers and Ratings of HMS Amethyst who, 70 years ago this month, made their escape from Communist captivity on the Yangtze.

Alexander Anderson

Hey can we please name the T31s. I was thinking we name them after admirals (EG: Pound, Jellicoe, Fisher, Cradock, Beatie, Nelson, Wellington, Howe. These are just ideas).