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Flagship navy aircraft carrier set to arrive in new home

The £3bn aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth will sail into Portsmouth.

HMS Queen Elizabeth: Carrier undergoing sea trials.
HMS Queen Elizabeth: Carrier undergoing sea trials. Royal Navy

The Royal Navy's future flagship is expected to arrive in her new home port within weeks.

The £3bn aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth will sail into Portsmouth by the end of August.

Extensive preparations at the naval base to accommodate the warship, the largest ever built for the navy.

The window for entry will open on August 17 and she is expected to dock no later than August 22.

The 280-metre, 65,000-tonne aircraft carrier has been undergoing sea trials since setting sail from Rosyth dockyard in June.

The carrier has no planes but flying trials are due to begin next year, with 10 F-35 Lightning II jets and 120 aircrew preparing for the task in the United States.

Defence secretary Sir Michael Fallon said: "In just two weeks' time, the most powerful warship ever built for Britain's famous Royal Navy is set to sail into her proud new home in Portsmouth.

"HMS Queen Elizabeth will be the Royal Navy's flagship for the next 50 years, keeping us safe by deploying across the seven seas, using her strike power to deter our enemies."

Preparations for the warship's arrival saw more than 20,000 items including a human skull and sea mines dredged up from Portsmouth Harbour.

A total of 3.2 million cubic metres of sediment were removed during the dredging operation carried out to deepen the harbour mouth.

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