Views from the Fleet Flagship 8

Posted on Friday 27 August 2021

Presenting the 8th in our exclusive series, Views from the Fleet Flagship, with a focus on Lieutenant Ivan Brown.

Explain your role onboard

I am the Education and Training Officer on board HMS Queen Elizabeth. My core role spans various domains, including personal development of our ratings and officers, professional training and defence engagement, along with the general duties of Naval Officers. I am part of a team of two Training Management Officers on board – we work together to deliver the following outputs.

Personal and professional development are intertwined in the training pipeline of a rating. Every enlisted person will get an apprenticeship qualification on completion of their Phase 2 training. Our main focus is on ensuring our Junior Rates and Senior Rates are educationally qualified for their next promotion, which usually includes Maths and English lessons, alongside their ‘on the job’ experience.

A large part of our role is ensuring that our Young Officers on Common Fleet Time get a comprehensive, challenging and robustly assessed training package. Young Officers will be taught the basics of Command, Leadership and Management theory, and will practise this in their day to day experiences whilst in work placements with the various departments on board. They will also be taught the underpinning principles of Operational tasks and learn the General Duties assigned to Naval Officers. Fleet Time is their first chance to experience a Naval Wardroom, and to integrate with others as commissioned officers. The newest iteration of Common Fleet Time was itself designed, trialled and refined onboard HMS Queen Elizabeth, before being rolled out to the wider fleet this summer.

We also work as Public Relations Officers, which encompasses a large amount of the media activity on the ship, from hosting, assisting and working with National and International Press to managing the Ship’s social media accounts. This requires us to understand the MOD’s intent for strategic messaging to different audiences, including at home in the UK, friendly nations and potential adversaries. We play an important part in ensuring that our activities are communicated to encourage co-operation, and where necessary, deter aggression.

What has the ship been up to in the last fortnight?

Over the last two weeks, we have left the tropical paradise of Guam and have sailed north towards South Korea and Japan, where we are going to conduct defence engagement activities.

Along the way we have conducted a number of exercises with  allies and partners – the Japanese Navy and the US Navy being our main partners here. In addition to proving our interoperability and conducting training, we have also conducted a number of PHOTEX’s, creating imagery of the UK Carrier Strike Group and visually demonstrating our presence in the Indo-Pacific region.

Photo: Lieutenant Ivan Brown conducting a ceremonial sunset onboard in Italy.

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