Let’s focus on Ark Royal’s triumphs, says former captain

Vice-Admiral Sir Alan Massey when he was the Captain of HMS Ark Royal
Vice-Admiral Sir Alan Massey when he was the Captain of HMS Ark Royal

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VICE-ADMIRAL Sir Alan Massey has urged people to reflect on Ark Royal’s triumphs on the day of her final farewell.

It comes as the Royal Navy’s former flagship is due to be towed for the scrapyard at 1pm today.

Sir Alan is a former Second Sea Lord and commanding officer of HMS Ark Royal.

He took over the aircraft carrier just a few months before the country went to war with Iraq in 2003, having previously served as an officer on board during the 80s.

Sir Alan told The News: ‘It’s sad to see her being towed off to the scrapyard but I’m preferring to see a more positive side and how proud everyone should be to have served in her.

‘Today is the grand finale but the fact is the navy moves on and people move on.

‘People of Gosport and Portsmouth will turn out to say farewell and I think that’s amazing.

‘I don’t think the people of Portsmouth give themselves enough credit for the very powerful sense of belonging that the navy gets from them.

‘It’s easy to be sad and glum but I would say: wow, what a ship.’

Hundreds of people are expected to gather in Old Portsmouth today to wave Ark Royal goodbye. For the full story, click here.