To celebrate the formal naming of the jump-ramp carrier HMS Prince of Wales, the UK’s Aircraft Carrier Alliance has released a time-lapse video of her construction. The vessel was built in sections at facilities around the UK, spreading the economic benefits of shipbuilding to communities around the nation, and then assembled at the Rosyth shipyard.
She is the second in her class after HMS Queen Elizabeth, which was built in the same manner. Both are built to carry the short takeoff / vertical landing variant of the F35 Lightning II, the same fighter that will be fielded by the U.S. Marine Corps. Each vessel will have an air wing of up to 30 F35s and four helicopters.
Prince of Wales will be the eighth vessel in the Royal Navy to bear the name; it was most recently carried by a World War II-era battleship whose life was brief and tragic. In an active career lasting not seven months, the last Prince of Wales was badly damaged while tackling Hitler's flagship Bismarck, carried Prime Minister Churchill across the Atlantic to meet President Roosevelt, and was sunk by Japanese forces in December 1941. Christopher Peacey, 93, was one of the few remaining survivors and was a VIP guest at the naming ceremony.