How long have we been painting ships for the Royal Navy?
Wood Group Industrial Services has been the leading marine painting contractor for the Royal Navy for the past 20 years culminating in being awarded the contract in 2009 through Ship Support Services to provide all of the painting services on the new build project constructing the Royal Navy’s latest warships, the two Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers. The lead vessel, HMS Queen Elizabeth is due to enter service in 2020 after two years of intensive sea trials.
At the end of 2015 Wood Group Industrial Services was also contracted by BAE Systems working at Portsmouth Dockyard to provide a range of painting services on HMS Victory, the famous flagship of the First Sea Lord, as part of her major refurbishment. The vessel is owned and maintained by The National Museum of the Royal Navy at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.
Both vessels have their place in the record books. Displacing 3,500 tonnes and launched in May 1765, HMS Victory at 250 years old is the World’s oldest naval ship in commission, whereas HMS Queen Elizabeth will be the largest warship ever built for the Royal Navy at 65,000 tonnes.
HMS Queen Elizabeth has a length of 280m compared to just under 70m for HMS Victory. Nevertheless as a sign of the times, the complement of HMS Queen Elizabeth is set to be a crew of only 733 compared to 850 that were serving aboard HMS Victory when she was at sea in the early 19th Century.
So, while both contracts were running, in 2015 Wood Group Industrial Services could proudly claim to have been providing specialist painting services on warships spanning over 250 years of Royal Navy history.