17 Mar 2016
16 Apr 2016
The #NameOurShip campaign is launched
Ding, ding! We've reached our destination


We are proud to announce that the selected name of the new £200m Pound Polar Research Ship, launching in 2019 is the RRS Sir David Attenborough. It is a fitting tribute to a man who has done so much to explain the wonders of the natural world to all of us. The name Boaty McBoatface will live on as the name of the ship's high-tech remotely operated sub-sea vehicle. We'd like to say a huge thank you to everyone who suggested names, shared tweets and got involved with the #NameOurShip campaign.

RRS Sir David Attenborough


Terms & Conditions

  • All suggestions will be approved by NERC before they are submitted to the website (
  • The final decision on the name of the ship will be taken by the Chief Executive of NERC.
  • Entrants contact details will be handled in line with the Data Protection Act 1998.
  • For the purposes of this competition your details will be shared with Blue Stag who are commissioned by NERC to create and maintain the twitter page related to the exercise.
  • Your personal details will not be shared with any other third party.
  • Only NERC staff will contact you in relation to this campaign

What's in a name?

  • Ships are traditionally referred to as female, but don’t let that restrict your ideas. After all we already have a RRS Ernest Shackleton, RRS James Clark Ross and RRS James Cook.
  • We will be applying to register her as a Royal Research Ship (RRS) so her name will be in the format of RRS Name.
  • She doesn’t have to be named after a person. Think RRS Discovery, HMS Vanguard or USS Enterprise.
  • Like a hashtag the best name for a ship is short, memorable and unique.
  • Although ship’s names are reused – there have been four RRS Discoverys.
  • Inspiration can come from many places. Historically the British Navy’s ships were named after monarchs or towns, but as the fleet grew names came from folklore and mythology and even flowers.​

Describe Your Entry!

When submitting a ship name for consideration, a strong description could make all the difference! This description will help justify your choice of name not only to NERC, but also to the other visitors to this website, and could have a large impact on the number of votes your entry recieves.