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The second of the UK’s giant new aircraft carriers will arrive in the city on 28 February for a week-long visit packed with celebrations and engagement with the local community supported by Liverpool City Council.
People are being offered the chance to get on board on 29 February and 1 March – the first time one of the new aircraft carriers has officially been open to visitors.
Commander Gareth Mawdsley, 41 from Liverpool, is the Commander of Logistics on board HMS Prince of Wales. He said: “Having grown up in Liverpool it is always special to be able to sail back along the Mersey, and I have been lucky enough to do so in several ships before.
“But being able to bring the largest ship in the Royal Navy fleet into my home port is fantastic. The city is always welcoming to visitors, and mariners in particular, so I am delighted we have the opportunity to return the hospitality by welcoming people on board during our stay.
“This aircraft carrier, like her sister ship HMS Queen Elizabeth, is vital to the work we do in the Royal Navy to help keep Britain safe. I would encourage everyone to come and take a look at us while we are here.”
Liverpool’s Deputy Mayor and cabinet member for culture, tourism and events, Councillor Wendy Simon, said: “Following last week’s announcement, there has been a real buzz around the arrival of HMS Prince of Wales.
“For many, it will be a once in a lifetime opportunity to board a warship of this scale, and it makes it even more special that it is affiliated with Liverpool. We expect tickets to be snapped up, so advise people to get theirs as soon as possible.”
Anyone who wishes to visit the ship ought to be physically fit and able to manoeuvre around small spaces. Access to and exit from the ship is via four flights of steps.
People without a ticket can still view the ship at the Liverpool Cruise Terminal from public areas such as Princes Parade. There will be some local road closures in place for the duration of the visit.
As an operational warship, HMS Prince of Wales is not suitable for visitors with restricted mobility due to the number of steps required to gain access to the ship.
However there will be allocated visit times for visitors with additional needs who will be able to view the ship up close from the quayside. To obtain tickets for those with accessbility requirements, call 0344 8000 410. These tickets are extremely limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.
The Royal Navy is transforming into a force centred around carrier strike – supporting the ships as they conduct carrier strike missions, enforce no-fly zones, deploy Royal Marine Commandos, deliver humanitarian aid, and build international partnerships with our allies.
HMS Prince of Wales is at the heart of the fleet as one of the most powerful surface warships ever constructed in the UK. Along with her sister ship HMS Queen Elizabeth, they are the largest ships ever built for the Royal Navy.
The ship’s flight deck is 70 metres wide and 280 metres long – enough space for three football pitches. Her ship’s company make their way through 170 metres of sausages a day, which is roughly twice the height of the Liver Building.
She has a ship’s company of 700 sailors, which will increase to around 1,600 with aircraft on board.
Exact timings for the ship’s arrival in Liverpool will be announced in due course, dependent on weather conditions and operational commitments.
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