Home / Maritime & Waterways Gallery / Warship Visits / Warship visits in 2020 / HMS Prince of Wales visits Liverpool - 28th February to 7th March 2020 48


Tuesday 3rd of March 2020 saw me heading off to Liverpool to catch a few shots of the UK's brand new Aircraft Carrier 'HMS Prince of Wales' (R-09), the second ship in the Queen Elizabeth Class which had just recently been commissioned into service in December 2019. The carrier made a one week courtesy visit to Liverpool from Friday 28th of February to Friday 7th of March 2020, and was moored at the Cruise Liner Terminal (CLT) at Pier Head. Over the weekend some 13,000 members of the public had been able to go onboard for a look around, but sadly all the tickets had long gone before I'd heard about it, and more Network Rail engineering work on my local line had ensured that any visits I made would have to be during the midweek period anyway, which, as it turned out, was on Tuesday 3rd of March.

In years gone by I had made many such visits to the city, mainly to get shots of the Cruise Ships that regularly visit there, and also for the round of pre-decommissioning visits that took place in 2010 and 2011 when our wonderful government axed a number of perfectly good vessels in its bid to bail out its thieving banker friends. Well at least this time it was in better circumstances, and to see a brand new ship at that. Back in 2009 I had visited the city when one of the UK's previous carriers 'HMS Illustrious' was making a 6 day visit to the city, so it was nice to see the new one, though as yet it doesn't have its new F-35 aircraft on board, and will be travelling to the US shortly to pick them up. There were a few helicopters on board though and a couple of Merlins did fly off down the Mersey, and a Chinook take off on a test flight whilst I was there. It as fortunate that it was wet and murky when I arrived, as I remember only too well from previous visits that trying to take pictures from Pier Head during the afternoons on sunny days usually means you end up with silhouette shots, so I naturally got all my Pier Head shots in first, and just as well, as the forecast (which was right for once) said that it would be fine and sunny during the afternoon period. To take advantage of the improvement in the weather I caught the 1pm 'River Explorer' cruise on the Royal Iris ferry, as this always offers some good vantage points from out on the water.

This visit has certainly brought in large numbers of visitors, well it's not often you get to see a large military vessel, especially a brand new one at that, so it was certainly well worth the trip over there. Let's hope it's sister carrier makes a visit one of these days as well now.

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