The Lightmongers light up and visit our new affiliate, the aircraft carrier HMS Queen Elizabeth
As part of our affiliation with HMS Illustrious we donated two light projectors, which could be used to project slide images onto the superstructure of the ship. This included the ships crest, the Lightmongers crest and flags of host nations.
On the decommissioning of Illustrious these projectors were retrieved, refurbished and equipped with a new set of slides ready for presentation to HMS Queen Elizabeth when she ready for sea.
On 11th October the Lightmonger team arrived around 5.30pm and were escorted to the ships side where power had been laid on. Many of the officers and crew remembered the projectors from their days on Illustrious and were excited that they could now be used on the new carrier. As darkness fell, so the images could be seen clearly, attracting the attention of everyone that passed, including an American 3* Admiral. We left the projectors in the good hands of Chief Petty Officer Rich Byers who had looked after them on illustrious. Whilst in Portsmouth the images will be projected on to her stern so they are visible to anyone visiting the historic dockyard.
The next day, the Master, Deputy Master, Junior Warden and Clerk were invited on board HMS Queen Elizabeth, together with the Worshipful Company of Grocers, the Worshipful Company of Shipwrights and the Merchants of the City of Edinburgh. This was the first chance for the affiliates to visit the carrier since her launch. Following an introduction from the captain we were taken to the Flight Control, Bridge, Hanger, Weapons preparation and other areas of the ship. But its not until you exit onto the flight deck you realise the true size.
The engineering that has gone into her construction is truly amazing and the Navy is rightfully proud of their new ‘real estate’. The ship has not yet been handed over by the contractors and as we left she was preparing for further sea trials. Before leaving we were able to present our certificate of affiliation to Captain Jerry Kyd.
A memorable occasion altogether and It is hoped that there will be more opportunities for Lightmongers to visit the carrier in the future.