HMS Warrior 1860 celebrates the 30th Anniversary of her return to Portsmouth

30th Homecoming Anniversary

There were mixed emotions in Hartlepool as the town bid farewell to the ship that had spent seven years in its care.

In the afternoon of Friday 12th June 1987, Warrior was pulled by tugs from her moorings and she began the four day journey back to Portsmouth. Tankers, ferries and trawlers turned out all along the east coast to salute her. In the English Channel, she had a memorable encounter with HMS London, the Royal Navy's newest vessel. London signalled the message "The Navy's newest ironclad is in company with the oldest... I hope we look as good as you at your age".

On June 16th 1987, 58 years after she left Portsmouth in a terrible condition, Warrior made her triumphant return. As she came slowly towards the narrow entrance to Portsmouth Harbour a flotilla of small boats greeted her, guns fired, klaxons sounded, crowds cheered, fireworks exploded, and red, white and blue balloons filled the air.

After an hour of careful manoeuvring, she entered her berth. When the tow rope was dropped, Warrior was home to stay and took her place within Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.

For further information about her homecoming, including interviews with our CEO Cdr Tim Ash, Shipwright Bob Daubeney, and one of our longest serving volunteers (24 years) Alastair Wilson who watched HMS Warrior return, please press the link to the BBC Radio Solent interview - http://bbc.in/2rysR5e