Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Former HMS Invincible leaves Portsmouth

The aircraft carrier Invincible has left Portsmouth for the last time before it is broken up at a Turkish scrapyard.

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

Wellwishers gathered at the quayside to say farewell to the ship, which was decommissioned six years ago.

It is being taken to Leyal Ship Recycling, based near Izmir, and will take eight months to dismantle.

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

The former HMS Invincible set off, towed by tugs, shortly after 0800 GMT and is expected to arrive in Turkey in about four weeks.

Sir Jeremy Black, who captained the ship during the Falklands conflict, said he felt "very sad indeed" to see the ship leave.

He said his most enduring memory of his time aboard was being "scared rigid" when a torpedo was fired at the ship.

"They fired it incorrectly and it wouldn't have hit us, thank God, because that would have spoilt my day," he said.

"In fact, it would have ruined the campaign."

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