Cinema break brings a taste of 80s action to HMS Illustrious

MOVIE NIGHT The ships company of HMS Illustrious today took time out from their busy operational programme to watch a movie on the flight deck.
MOVIE NIGHT The ships company of HMS Illustrious today took time out from their busy operational programme to watch a movie on the flight deck.

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FOR one night only, the flight deck of HMS Illustrious was turned into a giant floating cinema, and Top Gun was the only movie to suit the occasion.

The film night provided a bit of a break for the ship’s company of the 22,500-tonne helicopter carrier as she powered through the Gulf of Oman.

Rules about debris on the flight deck meant popcorn was off the menu while the 80s action hit about elite US Navy fighter pilots was on the screen.

So the cinema-goers were served up with ice cream instead as they relaxed under the stars in warm temperatures.

Lieutenant Sarah Simmons, who organised the film night, said: ‘This was an excellent break.

‘We saw an opportunity in the programme when the operational tempo allowed us to do this.

‘Top Gun on a helicopter carrier flight deck is one of those things that just had to be done.’

HMS Illustrious is deployed on a major exercise named Cougar 13.

Four warships and five support vessels left the UK in August on the deployment, which has seen them visit nations and conduct exercises in the Mediterranean, Red Sea, and the Gulf.