Royal Navy appoints first seagoing Captain for HMS Prince of Wales

The first seagoing Captain of the Royal Navy’s second new aircraft carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, will be Captain Stephen Moorhouse.

The announcement was made at an event at the Institute of Directors in London just two days before the warship is officially named in Rosyth.

Captain Moorhouse is a former Commanding Officer of HMS Ocean and HMS Lancaster, known as the ‘Queen’s Frigate’ because Her Majesty is the ship’s sponsor.

He will take over next year from Captain Ian Groom, who is serving as the Senior Naval Officer on board HMS Prince of Wales during the carrier’s build program.

Captain Moorhouse said: “I am honoured to have been appointed as the first seagoing Captain of HMS Prince of Wales, a hugely exciting job to be in at such an important time for the Royal Navy.

“Seeing our sister ship HMS Queen Elizabeth make her debut in Portsmouth last month was an amazing sight and I look forward to one day bringing HMS Prince of Wales home to the same warm welcome.

“Until then the ship’s company in Rosyth will continue to grow and they have much to be proud of in all the work they have done so far, working with our civilian industry partners to bring this ship to life.”

Captain Moorhouse, from Fareham, began his naval career in 1991 as a University Cadet Aviator. The 44-year-old has subsequently combined his aviation experience with a wide variety of sea and command appointments, including serving as the Principal Warfare Officer in HMS Chatham during Operation Telic, as the Commanding Officer of HMS Lancaster and, most recently, HMS Ocean.

HMS Prince of Wales is preparing for her official naming ceremony this Friday, to be attended by the ship’s sponsor Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Rothesay.

Her sister ship, the first of class HMS Queen Elizabeth, sailed into Portsmouth for the first time in August.

Both ships are being delivered for the Ministry of Defence by the Aircraft Carrier Alliance.