Her Majesty The Queen, accompanied by Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal, will attend the Commissioning Ceremony of HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH
HM Naval Base, Portsmouth
Thursday, 7th December 2017
Her Majesty The Queen will arrive by train at Portsmouth Harbour Station and be greeted by the Lord-Lieutenant of Hampshire (Mr. Nigel Atkinson) who will present the Hon. Mrs Mary Montagu-Scott (High Sheriff of Hampshire), Councillor Ken Ellcome (Lord Mayor of Portsmouth), the Lady Mayoress, the Leader of Portsmouth City Council (Councillor Donna Jones) and Mrs Oliva Pinkney (Chief Constable, Hampshire Police).
After travelling by car to HMNB Portsmouth, The Queen will be met by Commodore Jerry Kyd (Captain HMS Queen Elizabeth) and The Princess Royal (Commodore-in-Chief, HMNB Portsmouth). The Princess Royal will have arrived in Portsmouth earlier in the day, and have met a number of serving personnel in the ship, prior to the arrival of Her Majesty.
The Royal and Naval Party will proceed on board HMS Queen Elizabeth to the Hangar Deck, where approximately 3,700 invited guests, including Ship’s Company, their families and others, will be present. The Queen will be met by Admiral Sir Philip Jones (First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval Staff) on the Hangar Deck.
After proceeding onto a Dias, there will be a Royal Salute and National Anthem (by the Band of Her Majesty’s Royal Marines). The Queen, accompanied by the Captain and Lieutenant Commander Anthony Leeson (Officer of the Guard), will be invited to inspect the front rank of the Royal Guard, whilst The Princess Royal will be invited to inspect the rear rank accompanied by Commander Darren Houston (Commander of the Ship) and Lieutenant Jason Rogers (Second Officer of the Guard). The two ranks of the Royal Guard is made up of 96 members of the Ship’s Company.
Once the Inspection is over, The Royal Party will return to the Dias and the Commissioning Service commences with the Captain reading the Commissioning Warrant, at which point, the White Ensign is raised (on the upper deck, though a video link into the hangar will enable all those there to witness this moment).
The Service thereafter is led by The Reverend Ian Wheatley, Chaplain of the Fleet.
Her Majesty will then make an Address.
The Captain will then reply to Her Majesty and following the traditions of the Senior Service, the commissioning cake will be cut by the Captain’s wife and the youngest member of the Ship’s Company.
A ‘Cheer Ship’ (three cheers for Her Majesty) will signal the end of the formal Commissioning Ceremony.
Shortly after, The Queen and The Princess Royal will meet guests in the Hangar Deck, including members of the Ship’s Company and their families. The Royal Party will the join the First Sea Lord, the Captain and members of the Ship’s Company at a private lunch on board.
Following this, The Queen and The Princes Royal will sign the Visitors’ Book and be presented with flowers. Her Royal Highness will take leave of Her Majesty, who will then depart HMS Queen Elizabeth and the Naval Base by car.
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