A feast of floating vessels in harbour 62 years ago

Portsmouth Harbour from the top of the submarine escape tower at HMS Dolphin
Portsmouth Harbour from the top of the submarine escape tower at HMS Dolphin

THIS WEEK IN 1993: Portsmouth teenager killed in knife fight

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This is the second in Dennis Laing’s atmospheric trilogy of wide-angle photographs of Gosport and Portsmouth Harbour.

When I published the first last week, looking across Haslar Creek to Gosport, I suggested the photographer might have taken them from the top of the submarine escape tower at HMS Dolphin.

Malcolm Risk got in touch, not only to confirm that point but also to put a date to when they were taken – May 3, 1951.

He says: ‘The photo across Haslar Creek was indeed taken from the submarine escape training tower which was then under construction.

‘Taken by a staff photographer from the Admiralty Experiment Works (now Qinetiq) Haslar, the originals are safely archived at the Imperial War Museum.’

And he was able to name two of the submarines in that shot, which were HMS Alderney and HMS Springer.

Meanwhile, today’s picture shows a couple of aircraft carriers in the distance, beyond the training ship Foudroyant moored in the middle of the harbour, and I wonder if any sharp-eyed readers can name them.

There is an Isle of Wight paddle steamer at the end of the jetty leading to Portsmouth Harbour railway station.

Dennis believes the vessel on the right is the old floating bridge/chain ferry which ran between Point, Old Portsmouth, and Gosport.