When the inhabitants of Scotland voted three months ago to remain part of the United Kingdom, their decision preserved not only a 307-year-old union with England and Wales but also two sites of crucial strategic importance. Read More
The U.K. Royal Navy plans to relocate two Trafalgar-class nuclear attack boats (SSN) from the Southern England to the service’s primary submarine base in Scotland, the U.K. Ministry of Defense (MoD) announced last week. Read More
The heart of the United Kingdom’s nuclear submarine enterprise could be cut out if Scotland leaves the U.K. in Thursday’s referendum on Scottish independence, British leaders have warned repeatedly over the last several months.
Scots voting “Yes” for independence say they’re happy to see the subs go. Read More
As a flotilla of naval vessels from around the world participates in the Rim of the Pacific Exercise (RIMPAC) to sustain relationships in the maritime community, a century ago this week international navies converged for a remarkably different occasion—to drink the last of the U.S. Navy’s supply of alcohol. Read More
The British Royal Navy decommissioned HMS Tireless (S88), its oldest nuclear attack submarines, on Thursday in Plymouth, England. Read More
The U.K. Ministry of Defense has published the first images of it’s next-generation nuclear ballistic missile submarine (SSBN) — Successor-class as well as announced 79 million pounds ($129 million) in new contract awards. Read More
BAE Systems will close its shipyard operations in Portsmouth, U.K. in 2014 ending a tradition of 500 years of shipbuilding in region, the company announced on Wednesday. Read More
The death of Admiral John “Sandy” Woodward, Royal Navy, at age 81 on 4 August 2013 witnessed the passing of the Royal Navy’s most distinguished fighting admiral since World War II. He became the right rear admiral in the right place at the right time when Argentina invaded the Falkland Islands on 2 April 1982. His whole career had prepared him for the daunting responsibility of retaking the islands, roughly 8,000 miles from the British Isles. Read More
Naval History Magazine, January 2013
After more than five exhausting years of global conflict, the British Commonwealth organized a powerful modern fleet that fought as equal partners with the U.S. Navy in the late stages of the Pacific war.
For the Royal Navy, the end seemed to come quickly in the Pacific war. Less than three days after the conflict’s outbreak, Japanese aircraft attacked and sank the most powerful British warships in Far Eastern waters, the modern battleship Prince of Wales and the battlecruiser Repulse . Their loss, followed within a couple of months by the capture of the naval bases in Hong Kong and Singapore, effectively drove the British navy out of the Pacific.
But the Royal Navy—in the form of the British Pacific Fleet (BPF)—returned to make a major contribution in 1945 to the defeat of Japan. The BPF, its vital bases, and logistical support organization did not exist until late 1944, but eight months later, the fleet had become the most powerful deployed force in the history of the Royal Navy.
The BPF did not begin to come into focus until the August 1943 Quadrant Conference of Allied leaders in Quebec. Agreement was reached that greater priority should be given to the Pacific war, while retaining the “Germany first” principle. But for much of 1944, Prime Minister Winston Churchill and the British Chiefs of Staff argued over how best to implement the decisions.