Final structural section of UK Royal Navy’s HMS Prince of Wales installed

HMS Prince of Wales

The final structural section of the UK Royal Navy's second Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, has been installed in place, marking a construction milestone.

The milestone was achieved after His Royal Highness (HRH) Charles Philip, the Prince of Wales, signalled for the 570t block, known as Sponson 11, to be lowered into place.

The Prince, also known as Duke of Rothesay in Scotland, gave the royal seal of approval to the nation's future aircraft carrier.

"We are delighted to have HRH Duke of Rothesay here today to mark such a significant milestone."

HMS Prince of Wales senior naval officer captain Ian Groom MBE said: "We are delighted to have HRH Duke of Rothesay here today to mark such a significant milestone in the life of the ship, drawing the construction phase of the Royal Navy's second Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carrier to a close.

"The focus now moves to commissioning the ship and my team will continue to work with their Industry partners to bring her to life ahead of sea trials in 2018."

The 65,000t HMS Prince of Wales will join its sister ship HMS Queen Elizabeth, which was launched in July 2014.

HMS Prince of Wales, which will be handed over to the Royal Navy in 2019, along with HMS Queen Elizabeth will be used by all three sectors of the UK Armed Forces.

The aircraft carrier can accommodate a crew of 250 people and can carry 40 F-35B Lightning II fighter-bombers; and Merlin helicopters for airborne early warning and anti-submarine warfare.

Image: HRH Charles Philip, the Prince of Wales, along with representatives pictured before HMS Prince of Wales. Photo: courtesy of Royal Navy.