HMS Saxifrage was launched in 1918 as a Flower-class anti-submarine Q-ship. She was renamed HMS President in 1922 and moored permanently on the Thames as a Royal Navy Reserve drill ship. In 1982 she was sold to private owners, and having changed hands twice, now serves as a venue for conferences and functions, and serves as the offices for a number of media companies. Technically, she is now called HMS President (1918) to distinguish her from HMS President, the Royal Naval Reserve base in St Katharine Docks. She is one of the last three surviving Royal Navy warships of the First World War.[Note 1] She is also the sole representative of the first type of purpose built anti-submarine vessels, and is the ancestor of World War II convoy escort sloops, which evolved into modern anti-submarine frigates.
President has been permanently berthed in the River Thames on the Victoria Embankment in the City of London close to Blackfriars Millennium Pier and is listed on the National Register of Historic Vessels as part of the National Historic Fleet. The present owners plan to present her as an historical resource during the 2014-18 First World War centenary, as the U-Boat campaign of World War I was the greatest peril that Britain faced in 1917-18, and was the most critical naval conflict of that war.
During 2016 she was moved to Chatham during the construction of the new Thames Tideway Tunnel, one of the access tunnels will enter from Temple Avenue, next to where the ship has been moored since 1922. A crowdfunding appeal has been launched to pay for restoration.