Prince William is to become Patron of the HMS Alliance Conservation Appeal. The patronage has been announced on the day The Prince will tour HMS Alliance during a visit to the Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport, Hampshire. HMS Alliance is the only surviving World War II submarine preserved in the UK. Launched in 1945, Alliance was one of fourteen "A" class submarines built for service in the Far East. In commission for 28 years Alliance had a long and distinguished career that took her all over the world. She is now a member of the ‘Core Collection’ of the National Historic Ships Register, and with this joins icons such as HMS Victory and HMS Belfast. As the submarine has been on public display at the museum since 1981, she is in urgent need of conservation and restoration. The appeal was launched in October 2007 to run for two years in order to raise funds for her restoration and future maintenance. Prince William, Patron of the HMS Alliance Conservation Appeal, said: "I am delighted and honoured to become Patron of the HMS Alliance Conservation Appeal. "It is of great importance that such heritage is safeguarded to help future generations to understand the past heroism and sacrifice of Britain’s submariners. "I wish the Appeal every success in its crucial efforts to preserve this historic submarine for the Nation.” Vice-Admiral Sir Tim McClement, Chairman of the Appeal, said: "I am delighted that Prince William has agreed to be the Royal Patron for the Alliance Appeal.
"HMS Alliance is the only surviving World War Two submarine and needs to be maintained as a lasting memory to those who served in submarines during the war. Equally importantly, she also stands as a tribute to all submariners who have lost their lives in the service of their country." Prince William, who is currently serving on attachment to the Royal Navy and is Commordore-in-Chief, Submarines, is visiting the Royal Navy Submarine Museum today to open the Area of Remembrance. The memorial lists some 5300 names of submariners who gave their lives in service from 1904 to the present day. For press enquiries relating to the HMS Alliance Conservation Appeal, please contact Andrew Poole at The Royal Navy Submarine Museum on 02392 510354. For press enquiries relating to Prince William, please contact the Clarence House Press Office.