THE Queen will officially name the Royal Navy's new aircraft carrier at a ceremony this summer.

A traditional champagne christening will be held at Rosyth dockyard in Fife to mark the completion of the HMS Queen Elizabeth.

Thousands are expected on the banks of the Firth of Forth for the event on July 4, including members of the ship's crew and workers who helped to build it.

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The 65,000-tonne ship is Britain's biggest ever carrier and is said to be the most complex warship built in the UK. More than 7000 people in more than 100 companies across the country have worked on its construction.

The dock will be flooded later in July so the ship can be floated for the first time.

Sea trials are expected to begin in 2017, with flight trials of Lightning II aircraft starting the following year.

Defence Secretary Philip Hammond said: "This will be a proud and historic day, not just for the Royal Navy but for the entire nation. It is great news that Her Majesty will officially name the first aircraft carrier."