25 historic photos of Nelson's flagship HMS Victory since the Royal Navy vessel arrived in Portsmouth

Horatio Nelson’s HMS Victory is one of the navy’s most famous ships – and is the world’s oldest naval ship to still be in commission.

Wednesday, 9th September 2020, 12:39 pm
HMS Victory at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and Environs, Portsmouth, 1949
HMS Victory at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and Environs, Portsmouth, 1949

The 104-gun first-rate ship was launched for the first time in 1765 and is best known for her role as Lord Nelson's flagship at the Battle of Trafalgar on October 21 1805.

Over the next 80 years Victory also served as the Royal Navy flagship at Ushant in 1778, Cape Spartel in 1782 and Cape St Vincent at the end of the 18th century.

In 1922 she arrived in Portsmouth and was installed in a dry dock at the dockyard where she was been preserved as a museum ship.

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The Lord Mayor of Portsmouth Sir Denis Daly (in top hat) alongside Sir Algernon Willis on the quarter deck of HMS Victory.

Thousands of visitors enjoy tours of HMS Victory every year. In August it was announced that people will be able to walk underneath the hull of the ship for the first time in 100 years following a multi-million pound conservation project by the National Museum of the Royal Navy and BAE Systems.

Here are some of the most famous photos of HMS Victory’s past which we have found in our archives.

H.M.S. Victory & H.M.Y. Victoria & Albert - Portsmouth Harbour

The majority of images are available to purchase should you wish to do so on our Photosales section, or you can call 0330 403 0033 or email [email protected]

Join our new Portsmouth Retro Facebook group to find more fascinating photos and memories from Portsmouth’s past.

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The Fort Cumberland Guard perform their last drill in front of HMS Victory on the final evening of the Dockyard 500 events in 1995. The News PP4721
Portsmouth from the Gosport side of the harbour in the first decade of the 20th century. The floating bridge is in the middle of the picture. Incorporated in 1838, it began running in 1840. HMS Victory is moored nearest the shore
Portsmouth Basin No.1 with Nelson's Flagship HMS Victory now preserved in dry dock, 1987. The News PP5645
Rum rationing on the HMS Victory on February 1, 1995. The News PP4021
Royal Marine Band of the Commander in Chief Naval Home Command alongside HMS Victory in Her Majesty's Naval Base, Portsmouth, 1982. The News PP5161
Sea Rangers on board HMS Victory in the 1950's
The figurehead on HMS Victory, 1994. The News PP5353
In 1936 the Emperor Haile Selassi (Right) visited HMS Victory.
The first visitors to tour HMS Victory after she was brought back to the state she was in at Trafalgar July 17, 1928.
HMS Victory in the 192'0s. Take a look at HMS Victory today and when this picture was taken and there seems little difference.
On September 27, 1941, Mr Ernest Bevan the wartime Minister of Labour and National Service visited HMS Victory.
HMS Victory’s anchor. We have all seen HMS Victory’s anchor on its plinth on the seafront but at one time it was displayed in Old Portsmouth.
In July 22, 1941, the 18-year-old King Peter of Yugoslavia third from the left, visited HMS Victory.
Ships, barges and yachts. With HMS Victory as a background here we see all types of vessels in Portsmouth Harbour in 1898.
Empire Youth Sunday, May 21, 1950, beside HMS Victory.
Poopdeck and binnacle, HMS Victory. Seen on Trafalgar Day pre-First World War we see the crew of the Victory when still at anchor in Portsmouth Harbour.
HMS Victory, the finished item. On July 17, 1928 King George V crowned the restoration of HMS Victory and this is how she looked in immaculate condition.
The Semaphore Tower left of the masts of HMS Victory in the Naval Base in December 1974. The News PP5001
Luggage on the back of the cars with police standing guard. I wonder what was going on here around HMS Victory in Portsmouth Dockyard during the 1920s?
A look across Portsmouth Harbour from the Gosport side. HMS Victory still rides at anchor.
Nelson would have been amazed. Airship over the Victory
HMS Victory celebrating Trafalgar Day, perhaps in 1922
HMS Victory at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and Environs, Portsmouth, 1949