HMS Invincible sold to Turkish ship recyclers

image captionInvincible is the sixth ship of the Royal Navy to bear the name

The aircraft carrier HMS Invincible has been sold to a Turkish scrapyard which specialises in recycling ships.

The carrier, which saw action in the Falklands war, was sold through an internet site.

Leyal Ship Recycling, which is based near Izmir, was chosen ahead of a bid by a UK-based Chinese businessman.

Lam Kin-bong - who owns restaurants in the West Midlands - had offered £5m and wanted to turn the former warship into an international school in China.

But a Ministry of Defence spokesman said: "After 25 years of service HMS Invincible was decommissioned nearly six years ago and having reached the end of her distinguished career, it is right that we secure a good financial return for the taxpayer.

"The bid from Leyal Ship Recycling does this and also ensures she is disposed of in an environmentally friendly way."

Leyal has been involved in the scrapping of several Royal Navy ships - the destroyers Cardiff, Newcastle and Glasgow and auxiliary ship RFA Oakleaf.

HMS Invincible is expected to be towed from Portsmouth by the end of March and is expected to arrive in Turkey four weeks later.

It will take eight months to dismantle.

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