The last Royal Yacht, HMY Britannia, having seen more than 43 years’ service, was decommissioned at the end of 1997, with no replacement considered at the time, as this would have had to be resourced from a defence budget already under pressure - and subject to further cuts in succeeding years. Since then, campaigns to fund and build another Royal Yacht have come to nothing.
HMY Britannia - not coming back. Full stop
That thought did not occur to the remaining hacks and pundits at the increasingly desperate and downmarket Telegraph: ever ready to demonstrate their loyalty to the Crown, those at the paper have been campaigning for another Royal Yacht on and off since September last year, when they nicked the idea from the Sun’s alleged “Westminster Correspondent”, the odious flannelled fool Master Harry Cole.
Cole had invented a pack of lies about a new Royal Yacht; the Tel in its desperation took this up as a “campaign”. Now, a group of Tory MPs is equally desperate, and so the Tel’s Christopher “No” Hope has brought forth “Britannia to win the Lottery! Fifty Tory MPs back new lotto game to let public pay for new royal yacht”. This is crap, and going nowhere.
We can see this as the MP fronting the idea of a Boondoggle For The 21st Century is none other than Craig Mackinlay, now under investigation for, er, irregularities with his election expenses after the Tories called in supporters from all over the country to help him resist the challenge of former UKIP Oberscheissenführer Nigel “Thirsty” Farage in 2015.
No matter, the Tel has gushed “Using funds from a new national lottery game to pay for a new Britannia would allow ordinary Britons ‘the pride of having a stake’ in helping to fund the new yacht which would ‘showcase the best of British business and project our humanitarian role across the globe’, the MPs said”. But it’s still crap.
Britain does not need a Royal Yacht to showcase business, far less to negotiate and conclude trade deals. It does not need a Royal Yacht to “project our humanitarian role”. And we shell out quite enough on the Royal Family as it is. Also, the Royals already have access to whatever transport they need in order to carry out their duties.
But thanks to the Tel, we also now know that David T C Davies, Robert Halfon, Philip Hollobone, Jeremy Lefroy, Jack Lopresti, “Bonking” Bob Stewart, David Amess (no longer representing BASILDON), Andrew Bridgen, Philip Davies, Nigel Evans, Grant “Spiv” Shapps and many more prioritise a new Royal Yacht ahead of reducing food bank usage, homelessness, poverty, poor housing conditions, and much else.
We also have a superb example of how the Press and Pundit Establishment is totally out of touch with the world outside their hermetically sealed bubble, with Hope expressing surprise at the backlash to his idiotic suggestion: “What is wrong with asking people if they want to fund a new royal yacht? The only bills to the taxpayer would be the annual running costs”. Yeah, right. Britannia had a crew of 271. That’s around £15 million by itself.
You can at least double that with maintenance, fuel and the rest. How many nurses could that money fund? How many food parcels for the needy? How much in housing repairs?
The Telegraph and all those Tory MPs are living in Cloud Cuckoo Land. No change there.