HMS Queen Elizabeth, Alexandria, 1 January 1942

HMS Queen Elizabeth, Alexandria, 1 January 1942

HMS Queen Elizabeth, Alexandria, 1 January 1942

This picture shows Sir Andrew Cunningham saluting the hosting of the flag on HMS Queen Elizabeth on 1 January 1942, in Alexandria Harbour. At first glance this is a normal picture of a warship, but it was actually part of a deception operation. The Queen Elizabeth had been badly damaged by Italian divers using manned torpedoes in a daring raid on 19 December 1941, and was out of action for nine months. All of the Italian divers were captured, and an attempt was made to pretend that the Queen Elizabeth was still in service. This didn't last for long, as she soon had to go into drydock for repairs.


HMS Queen Elizabeth was a Super-Dreadnought battleship, launched on 16 October 1913 at Portsmouth, Hampshire. She saw action during the Great War. She had a displacement of 27,500 tons , was 645 ft 9 in (197 m) long with a beam of90 ft 6 in (27.6 m) Her top speed was 24 knots (44 km/h) and she had a crew compliment of 950 during the Second World War.

At the outbreak of the Second World War she was in the middle of a refit at Portsmouth, because of enemy bombing she was moved to Rosyth to for the refit to be completed. In May 1941 she joined the Mediterranean Fleet. On the 18th of December 1941 She was mined, along with HMS Valiant by Italian frogmen whilst in the harbour at Alexandria, Egypt. None of her crew lost their lives. The ship sank low in the shallow water, but was able to maintain an illusion of being fully operational so concealing the weak British position in the Mediterranean. She was raised and some repairs were undertaken then sailed to the United States Navy Yard in Norfolk, Virginia arriving in September 1942. Repairs were completed in June 1943 and HMS Queen Elizabeth was sent to the Pacific, where she served from 1944, taking part in raids on Japanese bases in Indonesia. She returned to Britain in July 1945, and was sold for scrap in March 1948.

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World War II Database


ww2dbase Queen Elizabeth was the lead ship of her class of dreadnought battleships. She was commissioned during WW1, and she participated in the Dardanelles Campaign almost immediately after her commissioning as the flagship for the preliminary naval operations. At Gallipoli between 25 Feb and 14 May 1915, she was the flagship for General Sir Ian Hamilton and bombarded forts on the Narrows with 86 15-in and 71 6-in shells. In Feb 1917, she became the flagship of the Home Fleet. She was the only ship in her class to have missed the Battle of Jutland because she was receiving maintenance at that time. During the inter-war period, she was the flagship of the Atlantic Fleet from 1919 to 1924, then the flagship of the Mediterranean Fleet from 1924 on. During the Spanish Civil War, she participated in the non-intervention blockade.

ww2dbase As the European War began, Queen Elizabeth was in the middle of a second refit at Portsmouth. She was moved to Rosyth in 1941 to avoid potential German aerial attack. She was completed and rejoined service in May 1941, taking up the role as the flagship of the Mediterranean Fleet. On 18 Dec 1941, while at Alexandria, Egypt, she was mined by Italian frogmen, who were all captured at the end of their operation. Queen Elizabeth sank, but because the water was shallow, the Royal Navy was able to maintain an illusion that she remained in operational status. She was eventually raised and temporarily patched so she could make the journey to the Norfolk Navy Yard in Virginia, United States, where she remained between Sep 1942 and Jun 1943. In Jan 1944, she joined the Eastern Fleet in the Indian Ocean and participated in operations against Japanese bases in Southwest Pacific region.

ww2dbase Near the end of WW2, Queen Elizabeth returned to Britain in Jul 1945. She was decommissioned in Mar 1948 and was scrapped in Jul 1948.

ww2dbase Source: Wikipedia.

Last Major Revision: May 2007

Battleship Queen Elizabeth Interactive Map

Queen Elizabeth Operational Timeline

1 Feb 1915 Queen Elizabeth was commissioned into service.
12 May 1942 Italian frogmen raided Alexandria harbor, Egypt, but failed to damage their target, HMS Queen Elizabeth.
21 Mar 1944 HMS Cumberland carried out offensive sweep in Indian Ocean with HM Battleships Queen Elizabeth, Valiant, HM Battlecruiser Renown, HM Aircraft Carrier Illustrious, HM Cruisers London, Gambia and Ceylon screened by fleet destroyers. (Operation Diplomat).
25 Jul 1944 HMS Cumberland, along with Eastern Fleet for offensive operation against targets in Sumatra including HMS Queen Elizabeth, HMS Valiant, HMS Renown, French battleship battleship Richelieu, HM Cruisers Nigeria, Kenya, Ceylon and Gambia and screened by five fleet destroyers, bombarded Japanese positions at Sabang (Operation Crimson).
8 Apr 1945 HMS Cumberland joined Task Group 63.2 with HMS Queen Elizabeth, French Battleship Richelieu and HMS London screened by 5 Fleet destroyers to cover air reconnaissance flights by HM Escort Aircraft Carriers Empress and Khedive at Port Swettenham (now Port Klang) and Port Dickson, Malaya (now Malaysia). (Operation Sunfish).
27 Apr 1945 HMS Cumberland joined Task Force 63 with HMS Queen Elizabeth, French battleship Richelieu, HM Escort Aircraft Carriers Shah and Empress with HM Cruisers Suffolk, Ceylon and Dutch cruiser Tromp escorted by five fleet destroyers for attacks on Nicobar Islands. (Operation Bishop. Note: This was a diversion during assault on Rangoon (Operation Dracula).
10 May 1945 HMS Cumberland deployed in TF61 with HMS Queen Elizabeth, FS Richelieu, HMS Cruiser Royalist, Dutch cruiser Tromp, HMS Hunter, HMS Khedive, HMS Shah and HMS Emperor of 21st Carrier Squadron. Destroyer screen comprised HM Destroyers Saumarez, Venus, Verulam, Virago, Vigilant, Nubian and Rotherham (Operation Dukedom - For interception and sinking of Japanese ships evacuating forces from Burma).
19 Mar 1948 Queen Elizabeth was decommissioned from service.

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Visitor Submitted Comments

1. Hobilar says:
9 Sep 2007 01:23:09 AM

HMS Queen Elizabeth had the distinction of being the first capital ship in the world to be equipped with oil-burning boilers. These being built by Babcock and Wilcox. The weight saved was utilised to increase her armour.

2. John Odom says:
24 Jun 2008 06:21:28 AM

Is there any truth to the rumor that she "stripped a turbine and cpuld only make 15 knots" at the battles of the Dardanelles?

3. Anonymous says:
15 Aug 2009 07:52:46 PM

Am I able to get alist and any other information about the crew? I am looking for information about Charles Dearden , an engineer.

4. Anonymous says:
25 May 2010 06:41:05 AM

I would be grateful if anyone might be able to give me more information on crew names - especially on one bert jeavons who came from lanesfield near wolverhampton. He was aboard during the time of U.S. refit and then on to operations in Sumatra where he took part in ground assaults.

5. a.de broissia says:
21 Jun 2010 10:52:05 AM

i would like to know if anyone has some information to give me about a certain midshipman called Fryett. i happen to have some documents concerning this person and some poems he wrote when in service on the hms Queen Elisabeth in 1939 -1941

6. Anonymous says:
20 Jul 2010 09:51:24 AM

Can anyone remember G Boultwood Queen Elizabeth WW2.

7. Anonymous says:
17 Mar 2011 09:27:38 AM

my father in law nobby clark was on sonar on the queen elizabeth. i would love to hear from anyone who served with him

8. Terry Dolan says:
2 Jun 2012 09:58:38 AM

My father served ,John Dolan ,CS ,anyone know him ,many years gone by . Terry

9. S Blakey says:
30 Nov 2013 04:56:10 AM

Mt father Leslie Park served on the Queen Elizabeth does anyone know of him?

10. Anonymous says:
15 Mar 2014 01:24:01 AM

my great uncle Johnny Helstrom, said he was a cook on board during WW2.

11. Jaytee says:
3 Jul 2014 04:58:15 AM

Sorry - there is an error of fact in this - HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH was very thoroughly SUNK by the Italian Frogmen in l942. There is a photo somewhere that shows this. She was raised and returned to service after extensive repairs in the USA. HMS VALIANT was badly damaged (but not sunk) in the same atttack

12. Iris Griggs says:
31 Jan 2015 06:28:34 AM

I would also like to know where to find a list of the crew on the Queen Elizabeth during WW2 please because I have been given to understand that my Uncle was acting Third Mate on C Deck. He was Thomas O'Brien.

13. Anonymous says:
29 Mar 2015 12:01:33 PM

I came across the passage of writing below on the website and can say that I knew Bert Jeavons - he was my uncle. I'd be interested in hearing from the person who posted this.

Anonymous says:
25 May 2010 06:41:05 AM

I would be grateful if anyone might be able to give me more information on crew names - especially on one bert jeavons who came from lanesfield near wolverhampton. He was aboard during the time of U.S. refit and then on to operations in Sumatra where he took part in ground assaul

14. michael beckley says:
5 May 2015 12:13:06 PM

My grand father was a gunner on board HMS
Queen Elizabeth in his diary there is mention of a problem with the turbine,he also describes in detail action in the dardenelles,i hope to get this published in a magazine soon for all to see

15. Tina Mckenna says:
15 Jul 2015 06:50:26 AM

My Grandfather was a AS Anthony O'Brien, he was also a gunner aboard the Queen Elizabeth 1941-45. I was hoping someone can give me more information.

16. j dixon says:
21 Dec 2015 07:08:56 AM

look for one who knew ted Dixon sonar about 1944

17. Alan says:
28 May 2016 09:29:05 PM

Just wondering if anyone has stories that they can share about the stokers that were on this ship in 1943 to 1945. My grandfather served on the Queen Elizabeth during that time - William Simmonds

18. P. Fields says:
29 Apr 2019 08:53:20 PM

My father John I. Blair III was a Master Sargeant on Queen Elizabeth during World War II. He was in charge of loading wounded soldiers on board quickly in England. He developed a traige system that became widely used. They were able to get in & out of the dock quickly before they were discovered by the enemy. That is about all he ever told me. Does anyone else have any information on this? All his records of service were burned in a building that contained war records.

19. Virginia Eckley says:
6 Mar 2020 01:47:55 PM

My dad was brought back home from ww2 on that ship

20. Anonymous says:
12 Mar 2020 06:47:56 PM

I beieve my father James Michael Marsh served on the queen elizabeth and queen mary during world war 2, looking for any information please,

21. Anonymous says:
15 Aug 2020 01:18:26 PM

My grandfather was taken to America at the end of the war in Japan on this ship. Returned home to England 6 months later

22. mick wilson says:
8 Mar 2021 02:30:24 PM

My uncle served on hms Queen Elizabeth in ww2. I know that he went to Norfolk Verginia USA to do sea trials after repairs I have photos othe ship out there.

All visitor submitted comments are opinions of those making the submissions and do not reflect views of WW2DB.


Early Efforts

Instead, what followed was a series of piecemeal raids.

The first three attempts, in August, September, and October 1940, were thwarted by technical issues and British action. The third attack alerted the British to the fact they were facing manned torpedoes, although they did not have any details.

A rethink followed, the Italians learning from their failures. Over the following year, several raids took place, using both surface boats and submersibles loaded with explosive charges. Some were successes, including the sinking of the heavy cruiser York. Others were failures. Despite the losses it proved the SLC had potential as a weapon.


The Raid on Alexandria by Italian Navy divers using manned torpedoes to disabled two Royal Navy battleships

On 19 December in 1941, limpet mines placed by Italian divers sink the HMS Valiant (1914) and HMS Queen Elizabeth (1913) in Alexandria harbour.

The Raid on Alexandria was carried out on 19 December 1941 by Italian Navy divers, members of the Decima Flottiglia MAS, who attacked and disabled two Royal Navy battleships in the harbour of Alexandria, Egypt, usin g manned torpedoes.

On 3 December, the submarine Scirè of the Italian Royal Navy (Regia Marina) left the naval base of La Spezia carrying three manned torpedoes, called maiali (pigs) by the Italians. At the island of Leros in the Aegean Sea, the submarine secretly picked up six crewmen for them: Luigi Durand de la Penne and Emilio Bianchi (maiale nº 221), Vincenzo Martellotta and Mario Marino (maiale nº 222), and Antonio Marceglia and Spartaco Schergat (maiale nº 223).

On 19 December, Scirè—at a depth of 15 m (49 ft)—released the manned torpedoes 1.3 mi (1.1 nmi 2.1 km) from Alexandria commercial harbour and they entered the naval base when the British opened their defenses to let three of their destroyers pass. There were many difficulties for de la Penne and his crewmate Emilio Bianchi. First, the engine of the torpedo stopped and the two frogmen had to manually push it then Bianchi had to surface due to problems with the oxygen provider, so that de la Penne had to push the Maiale alone to where HMS Valiant lay. There he successfully placed the limpet mine, just under the hull of the battleship. However, as they both had to surface, and as Bianchi was hurt, they were discovered and captured.

Questioned, both of them kept silent, and they were confined in a compartment aboard Valiant, under the sea level, and coincidentally just over the place where the mine had been placed. Fifteen minutes before the explosion, de la Penne asked to meet with Valiant’s captain Charles Morgan and then told him of the imminent explosion but refused to give further information, so that he was returned to the compartment. Fortunately for the Italians, when the mine exploded just before them, neither he nor Bianchi was severely injured by the blast, while de la Penne only received a minor injury to the head by a ship chain.

Meanwhile, Marceglia and Schergat had attached their device five feet beneath the battleship HMS Queen Elizabeth ‘s keel as scheduled. They successfully left the harbour area at 4:30 am and slipped through Alexandria posing as French sailors. They were captured two days later at Rosetta by the Egyptian police while awaiting rescue by the Scirè and handed over to the British. Martellota and Marino searched in vain for an aircraft carrier purportedly moored at Alexandria, but after sometime, they decided to attack a large tanker, the 7554 gross register ton Norwegian Sagona. Marino fixed the mine under the tanker’s stern at 2:55 am. Both drivers managed to land unmolested but were eventually arrested at an Egyptian checkpoint.

In the end all the divers were made prisoners, but not before their mines exploded, severely damaging both HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Valiant, disabling them for nine months and six months respectively. The Sagona lost her stern section and the destroyer HMS Jervis, one of four alongside her refuelling, was badly damaged. Although the two capital ships sank only in a few feet of water and were eventually raised, they were out of action for over one year.

This represented a dramatic change of fortunes against the Allies from the strategic point of view during the next six months. The Italian fleet had temporarily wrested naval supremacy in the east-central Mediterranean from the Royal Navy.

Valiant was towed to Admiralty Floating Dock 5 on the 21st for temporary repairs and was under repair at Alexandria until April 1942 when she sailed to Durban. By August she was operating with Force B off Africa in exercises for the defence of East Africa and operations against Madagascar. Queen Elizabeth was in drydock at Alexandria for temporary repairs until late June when she sailed for the United States for refit and repairs, which ended the following June. The refit was completed in Britain. Jervis was repaired and operational again by the end of January.


Historical Info

Construction

Specifications

Machinery

Performance

Armor

Armament

Secondary
Anti-Aircraft
Torpedoes

Complement

History

Design

The Queen Elizabeth class was originally envisioned as an iterative improvement over the previous Iron Duke, but several previously untried principles were introduced. A top speed of 25 knots was specified, to be achieved by building the ships as the first entirely oil-fueled battleships in the world. The proposed 14-inch guns were to be replaced by 15-inch guns — a measure strongly supported by then-First Sea Lord Winston Churchill — to keep the Royal Navy both peerless and parlous.

As designed and ordered, the Queen Elizabeth-class battleships would have two fewer guns than their predecessors, but a heavier broadside weight due to the use of the 15-inch guns. The removal of the mid-ship centerline turret simplified the arrangement of the engineering spaces while also allowing the ships to be completed with the modest approximate 2,000 ton increase over the Iron Duke class. Though the design speed was intended to be 25 knots, this was, in practice, never reached.

The Queen Elizabeth class became a remarkably successful design, and served through both world wars. Subject to extensive modification during the interwar years, their appearance and capabilities changed radically over their service lives.

Queen Elizabeth in particular saw her first modification when it was determined her secondary armament stations as designed were prone to being washed out even under normal conditions. Two of her 6-inch guns were removed, and two were re-sited to the boat deck in shielded mounts during 1915. All other ships of the class were then completed with this arrangement. She received an extra inch of armor over her main armored deck after the experience of Jutland, and in the early 1920s she was equipped with a flying-off platform on each of her A and X turrets for spotting or fighter aircraft, though she had no means of recovering them.

Queen Elizabeth underwent her first major reconstruction from 1926 to 1927. Her funnels were trunked (combined), the flying-off platforms removed, and she received torpedo bulges. In 1937, she paid off for a second, even more extensive reconstruction. Her submerged torpedo tubes were removed, newer, more efficient engine machinery installed, and her main battery received and elevation increase to 30 degrees which increased effective range. Her superstructure was completely redesigned at this time, and the bridge fully enclosed. Her armament was further modified with all her 6-inch guns being landed, the casemates were plated over, and she received ten twin (10x2) QF Mark I and Mark III 4.5-inch high-angle, dual-purpose guns instead. Her deck armor was further augmented at this time. Queen Elizabeth received an ever-increasing number of anti-aircraft weapons over her service life, and by 1945 had over fifty 20mm guns installed.

Service History

HMS Queen Elizabeth was sent to join the Mediterranean in late 1914. There she engaged in bombardment of Turkish positions as part of the preparation for the Gallipoli landings, but was withdrawn in May 1915 to rejoin the Grand Fleet. She served as fleet flagship for the remainder of the war, but was engaged in a refit and thus absent from the Battle of Jutland. She again resumed flagship duties for the Atlantic Fleet through 1924, when she transferred to the Mediterranean, again as fleet flagship until 1926, when she returned to England for refit. Upon completion, Queen Elizabeth rejoined the Mediterranean Fleet until 1937, when she returned to England for her second major refit.

Queen Elizabeth completed her second refit in January 1941 and was attached to the Home Fleet until May, when she once again was sent to serve as flagship of the Mediterranean Fleet. She would spend the remainder of 1941 escorting convoys and covering the evacuation of Crete. In December 1941, Queen Elizabeth was anchored in Alexandria, Egypt when a large limpet mine placed on her bottom by Italian divers was detonated, causing severe flooding and sinking the ship to the harbor bottom, though her decks remained above water. Over the next few months, she was refloated and sailed for Norfolk Naval Yard in the United States for refit and repairs in late June 1942. Having completed repairs, Queen Elizabeth embarked for England in late June 1943, where she served with the Home Fleet until sent to the Indian Ocean in December, arriving in January 1944.

Queen Elizabeth was made fleet flagship of the Pacific Fleet, and participated in the raids on Japanese targets in the Netherlands East Indies throughout 1944 and 1945, as well as joining the covering force which attacked targets in the Andaman Islands in support of the recapture of Rangoon in British Burma in 1945. In July 1945, Queen Elizabeth was replaced by Nelson and returned to Portsmouth, England that August. She was then placed in reserve and used as an accommodation ship until March 1948, when she was sold off for scrapping. Queen Elizabeth was broken up for scrap in July 1948.


De la Penne faced a tougher approach. Cables and nets around the battleshipValiant trapped his SLC. He got out and freed the craft, tearing his wetsuit in the process. His co-pilot fainted and floated to the surface. The SLC’s engines refused to restart, and despite his best efforts he could not drag it beneath the Valiant.

Also becoming ill due to his breathing apparatus, de la Penne swam to the surface. He and his co-pilot were captured. Their SLC lay on the bottom of the harbor, close enough to the Valiant that its explosives might still offer a threat.

HMS Queen Elizabeth in Alexandria harbour surrounded by anti-torpedo nets.


Raid [ edit | edit source ]

On 19 December, Scirè—at a depth of 15 m (49 ft)—released the manned torpedoes 1.3 mi (1.1 nmi 2.1 km) from Alexandria commercial harbour, Β] and they entered the naval base when the British opened their defenses to let three of their destroyers pass. There were many difficulties for de la Penne and his crewmate Emilio Bianchi. First, the engine of the torpedo stopped and the two frogmen had to manually push it then Bianchi had to surface due to problems with the oxygen provider, so that de la Penne had to push the Maiale alone to where HMS Valiant lay. There he successfully placed the limpet mine, just under the hull of the battleship. However, as they both had to surface, and as Bianchi was hurt, they were discovered and captured.

Questioned, both of them kept silent, and they were confined in a compartment aboard Valiant, under the sea level, and coincidentally just over the place where the mine had been placed. Fifteen minutes before the explosion, de la Penne asked to meet with Valiant ' s captain Charles Morgan and then told him of the imminent explosion but refused to give further information, so that he was returned to the compartment. Fortunately for the Italians, when the mine exploded just before them, neither he nor Bianchi were severely injured by the blast, while de la Penne only received a minor injury to the head by a ship chain. Γ]

Meanwhile, Marceglia and Schergat had attached their device five feet beneath the battleship HMS Queen Elizabeth's keel as scheduled. They successfully left the harbour area at 4:30 am, and slipped through Alexandria posing as French sailors. They were captured two days later at Rosetta by the Egyptian police while awaiting rescue by the Scirè and handed over to the British. Δ] Martellota and Marino searched in vain for an aircraft carrier purportedly moored at Alexandria, but after sometime they decided to attack a large tanker, the 7554 gross register ton Norwegian Sagona. Marino fixed the mine under the tanker's stern at 2:55 am. Both divers managed to land unmolested, but were eventually arrested at an Egyptian checkpoint. Ε]

In the end all the divers were made prisoners, but not before their mines exploded, severely damaging both HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Valiant, disabling them for nine months and six months respectively. Ζ] The Sagona lost her stern section and the destroyer HMS Jervis, one of four alongside her refuelling, was badly damaged. Although the two capital ships sank only in a few feet of water and were eventually raised, they were out of action for over one year. Η]


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Impressive New Pictures Of HMS Queen Elizabeth As She Sails From Portsmouth

HMS Queen Elizabeth, one of the two most powerful and largest aircraft carriers the Royal Navy has ever possessed, has left her home in Portsmouth to continue preparing for full-readiness operations.

Pulling out of the city and into the Solent, HMS Queen Elizabeth has been photographed in all her glory as she makes her way to the west coast of Scotland to join Exercise Joint Warrior.

Once there, she will be complemented with F-35 fighter jets from RAF Marham and visiting US F-35 B jets.

The arrival of these aircraft will make HMS Queen Elizabeth the most embarked-upon Navy carrier since HMS Hermes – the Flagship of British forces during the Falklands War in 1982.

Key Information: HMS Queen Elizabeth

Commanding Officer

Captain Angus Essenhigh OBE

Displacement

Phalanx – 4,500 rounds per minute

Several 30 mm automated small calibre guns

2 x Rolls-Royce Marine Trent 48,000 hp gas turbine engines

4 x Wärtsilä 38 marine diesel 15,600 hp engines

Rolls-Royce power generator delivering enough energy to power 300,000 kettles

Propellers

2 x bronze Rolls-Royce propellers at 33 tonnes each, 22 ft diameter

Big Lizzie can boast four galleys, a further four large dining areas and kitchen facilities staffed by up to 40 chefs who can produce, among a culinary array of all sorts, a thousand loaves of bread per day.

This allows HMS Queen Elizabeth to provide enough food for 1,600 personnel for up to 45 days without resupply.

Fitness lovers are furnished with five gyms, a cardio facility, weights room and a boxing ring. There is also a fully furnished medical centre and chapel.

For any ill discipline, a Royal Navy Police Department maintains three prison cells on board HMS Queen Elizabeth.

There has been just one other Royal Navy ship named HMS Queen Elizabeth in the past.

The original Queen Elizabeth, a battleship, launched in 1913 played a role in both the first and second world wars.

In the Great War, Queen Elizabeth was part of the Grand Fleet seeing action in the Dardanelles and was one of the first Royal Navy ships to be powered by oil, not coal.

In World War Two, the battleship saw action at Crete and Alexandria where she was damaged by a human torpedo. After taking repairs, she saw the end of the war out in the Far East taking part in raids on Japanese bases in the Dutch East Indies. The ship, HMS Queen Elizabeth, was paid off and retired in 1948.

F-35 ABCs: Learn About Britain's Most Expensive Warplane And Its Variants

Although HMS Queen Elizabeth is yet to deploy on operations, she has clocked up significant mileage during the three years since her initial sea trials.

Her first outing on June 26, 2017, saw the massive ship manoeuvre under the three Forth bridge crossings before sailing in the open sea off the east coast of Scotland. During this initial trial, HMS Queen Elizabeth accepted her first aircraft, a Merlin helicopter from 829 Naval Air Squadron.

On August 16, 2017, HMS Queen Elizabeth arrived in Portsmouth for the first time and took up berth in the newly named Princess Royal Jetty.

Further sea trials in home waters came next, with a journey to the south west coast of England in November 2017 before returning to Portsmouth in anticipation of her naming ceremony in December.

2018 saw newly named Queen Elizabeth’s operational training step up several gears, which included her first stop off overseas (Gibraltar – February) and amphibious assault trials with Royal Marines from 42 Commando.

In Autumn 2018, HMS Queen Elizabeth sailed across the Atlantic for the first time and completed the first of her training packages with fixed wing aircraft. During this deployment, HMS Queen Elizabeth and her crew visited New York on a planned seven-day visit which also marked the changing of the ship’s command from Commodore Kyd to Captain Nick Cooke-Priest.

2019 saw Queen Elizabeth focus heavily on fixed-wing trials and another changing of the ship’s command. In December, the first launch of an F-35B from her deck occurred in territorial waters near Portsmouth Harbour. The year ended with the ship’s current commander, Captain Angus Essenhigh, taking up his role ahead of the final phase of its preparedness and initial operational deployments.

Queen Elizabeth is scheduled to complete Exercise Joint Warrior – an exercise that will see the most aircraft on board a British carrier since HMS Hermes – moving the ship and her crew in touching distance of full operational readiness.

HMS Queen Elizabeth's first operational deployment in scheduled for Spring 2021.


Watch the video: Raid on Alexandria - 1941 - Lattacco ad Alessandria HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Valiant