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The King and Princess of Wales take on new Naval appointments

Published: 14 Aug 2023

The nation’s flagship today has a new sponsor with His Majesty the King assuming the role from his late mother. And the Princess of Wales will become the honorary head of naval aviation as she assumes the role of Commodore-in-Chief of the Fleet Air Arm.

The appointments are two of many announced by Buckingham Palace today following a review of all military titles and positions held by members of the Royal Family, initiated following the deaths of Queen Elizabeth II and The late Duke of Edinburgh, and the Accession of His Majesty The King.

“I am delighted with today’s announcements,” First Sea Lord Admiral Sir Ben Key said.

“I know the Ship’s Company of HMS Queen Elizabeth and all of the Fleet Air Arm are very much looking forward to engaging with their new Sponsor and Commodore-in-Chief respectively.

“I am particularly pleased that with The King as her Sponsor, HMS Queen Elizabeth will continue to be ‘The Monarch’s Carrier’.”

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was the sponsor of Portsmouth-based HMS Queen Elizabeth, formally naming the aircraft carrier in Rosyth, attending the ship’s commissioning and, famously, paying a surprise visit before the vessel sailed on her maiden deployment in 2021.

Beyond attending milestone moments and events in the ship’s life, the sponsor is kept regularly informed of activities and deeds by the ship via reports sent on behalf of the commanding officer.

The role of Commodore-in-Chief of the Fleet Air Arm is similar, reaffirming the bond between the Royal Family and the Armed Forces, again the guest of honour at major ceremonial occasions and events, being kept abreast of developments and actions of the world of naval aviation.

It is the second naval honour bestowed on the Princess of Wales, who is already the sponsor of HMS Glasgow, the leading ship of eight new Type 26 frigates design to protect the Fleet and nation from the prying eyes – and teeth – of hostile submarines.


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