10 Facts About The Royal Navy

1. The Royal Navy contributes to the combined maritime forces in the Gulf in support of coalition operations.

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2. The Royal Navy is a key element of the British contribution to NATO, with a number of assets allocated to NATO tasks at any time.

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3. The Royal Navy was to receive 12 Type 45 destroyers as a replacement for the older Type 42 class that was completely retired by 2013.

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4. The Royal Navy began plans to replace its fleet of aircraft carriers in the mid-1960s.

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5. The Royal Navy was vital in guarding the sea lanes that enabled British forces to fight in North Africa, the Mediterranean and the Far East.

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6. The Royal Navy had lost control of naval aviation when the Royal Naval Air Service was merged with the Royal Flying Corps to form the Royal Air Force in 1918, but regained control of ship-board aircraft with the return of the Fleet Air Arm to Naval control in 1937.

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7. The Royal Navy invested in dockyards, and commissioned the oldest surviving dry dock in 1495 at Portsmouth.

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8. The Royal Navy embarked on a program of building merchant ships larger than heretofore.

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9. The Royal Navy operates three bases in the United Kingdom where commissioned ships are based; Portsmouth, Clyde and Devonport, the last being the largest operational naval base in Western Europe.

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10. The Royal Navy played a key part in establishing the British Empire as the unmatched world power during the 19th and first part of the 20th centuries.

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