Royal Navy is the naval warfare branch of the United Kingdom of Great Britain. It is the 7th strongest navy in the world after United States, China, Russia, India, Japan and France. Its main objective is to protect the maritime interests and boundaries of U.K. It also has a role of nuclear deterrence.
Royal Navy was founded in 1546 by King Henry VIII. This makes it the second oldest navy in the world after the Portuguese Navy. It played a very important role during the First World War and Second World War, Falklands War, Napoleonic Wars, etc.
Royal Navy’s Primary Fleet:
Royal Navy has 32,760 active duty naval personnel. It has 3870 maritime reserve personnel and 7960 Royal Fleet Reserve personnel. Royal navy maintains a fleet of 77 commissioned ships. This may seem a little less as compared to previous naval powers, but RN an upper hand in technology.
This fleet includes, 2 aircraft carrier (Second aircraft carrier is under sea trials), 11 submarines of which 4 are SSBNs (Nuclear Ballistic Missile Submarines) and remaining 7 are SSNs (Nuclear Fast Attack Submarines), 13 mine countermeasure ships, 13 frigates, 6 guided missile destroyers, 2 amphibious transport docks and 23 patrol vessels.
Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA):
RN also maintains an additional fleet called ‘Royal Fleet Auxiliary’ which consists of oilers and replenishment ships which can be called auxiliary ships. Their main role is replenishment and operational support. A total of 1900 personnel are working under the RFA. This fleet has a total tonnage of 337,000 tons.
Command and Control of the Royal Navy
HMS (Her Majesty’s Ship) is the prefix used for its ships. Royal Navy’s headquarters is located in London. Its motto is “ If you wish for peace, prepare for war”.Lord High Admiral Prince Phillip is the Commander-in-Chief of the Royal Navy.