Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Royal naming for new Portsmouth aircraft carriers jetty

Princess Royal unveiling a plaque in Portsmouth
Image caption After the ceremony, Princess Anne met bomb disposal experts who dealt with devices dredged up during upgrade works

A jetty for the Royal Navy's new aircraft carriers in Portsmouth has been officially named by Princess Anne.

The Princess Royal Jetty has been strengthened to accommodate the 65,000-tonne Queen Elizabeth class carriers.

Formerly known as Middle Slip Jetty, the 90-year-old structure has been upgraded over the past 18 months.

After the naming ceremony, the princess met bomb disposal experts who have dealt with World War Two bombs unearthed during dredging work.

She was also shown one of the giant gangways which sailors will use to get on and off the ships.

The work on the jetty was part of a £100m upgrade to the harbour, including dredging of the approach channel, inner harbour area and berth in order to make them deep and wide enough for the new ships.

A number of unexploded World War Two bombs have been discovered during the work, leading to evacuations and disruption to transport.

The more modern Victory Jetty is also be improved so that both ships can be in port simultaneously.

HMS Queen Elizabeth - currently being fitted out at Rosyth dockyard in Scotland - is due to make her debut in Portsmouth later this year.

A second carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, is still under construction in Rosyth.

Image copyright Royal Navy
Image caption The 90-year-old Middle Slip Jetty was upgraded to accommodate the new Queen Elizabeth class carriers

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