These images show the Royal Yacht Britannia from HMS Solebay

Royal salute - the ship's company of HMS Solebay raise their hats to the Queen as they sail past Britannia in the Mediterranean
Royal salute - the ship's company of HMS Solebay raise their hats to the Queen as they sail past Britannia in the Mediterranean
Landport Gate with No1 and No2 St George's Road on either side. This view was taken from within the sports ground. Note the new brickwork on the right, bomb damage repairs.

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This is the ship’s company of the Battle class destroyer HMS Solebay giving three cheers to the Queen during her final commission.

She had been chosen to escort the Royal Yacht Britannia on the Queen’s visit to west Africa.

These images show the Royal Yacht Britannia from HMS Solebay

These images show the Royal Yacht Britannia from HMS Solebay

These pictures come from a member of that company, Barry Spencer, of Chatsworth Avenue, Cosham.

He has just returned from a reunion of old shipmates and next year’s event will mark 50 years since they left the ship after this last commission in 1962.

Barry said: ‘As we were Captain D of the final destroyer, our prize was always to be closest to Britannia at all times at sea and in harbour, so we got to know her pretty well.

‘It must be fate that our reunion next year will be in Edinburgh when we will be reunited with Britannia on a special visit to see her and rekindle memories of the ceremonial duties that went with being the royal escort.’

It’s not lost on Barry that 2012 will also be the diamond anniversary of the Queen’s accession to the throne.

He said: ‘All that seems a world away from today. From a boy seaman to an OAP – it’s a wonderful life and you should enjoy it to the full.’

HMS Solebay was the eighth ship to bear the name. She was broken up in 1967. The name came from the first naval battle of the third Anglo-Dutch war in 1672. It was fought off Sole Bay, near Southwold in Suffolk.