Rarely-seen photos show what being a Royal Navy sailor in Portsmouth was like

If you’ve ever wondered what life was like for a sailor in years past, take a look at these rarely-seen black and white photos.

Wednesday, 13th May 2020, 4:25 pm
Updated Wednesday, 13th May 2020, 4:26 pm
26th September 1933:  Three Royal Navy sailors from H M S Excellent holding a pig at Whale Island, Portsmouth.  (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
26th September 1933: Three Royal Navy sailors from H M S Excellent holding a pig at Whale Island, Portsmouth. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)

From training exercises to the daily grind in the barracks, life as a Royal Navy sailor in Portsmouth has never been dull.

Here is a wonderful selection of historic images from days gone by.

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13th December 1933: A line of sailors at the Royal Naval barracks at Portsmouth pass Christmas puddings to their comrades from the back of a wagon. (Photo by PNA Rota/Getty Images)
5th April 1934: Sailors from the naval training college at Gosport, giving a statue of HM Queen Victoria a soap and water wash. (Photo by Reg Speller/Fox Photos/Getty Images)
1940: Sailors at the Central Signal station, Portsmouth, southern England, during WW II. One is using a telescope. (Photo by Central Press/Getty Images)
Sverdlov sailors visit Portsmouth. In June 1953 Russian sailors from the cruiser Sverdlov visited the city. A happy group of Russian sailors from the Soviet cruiser 'Sverdlov' enjoying themselves in the company of some Portsmouth girls during a garden party in Portsmouth, England, 12th June 1953. The crews of the ships assembled at Spithead in readiness for the Coronation Naval Review, were given a civic welcome in the form of a garden party at Portsmouth, and the Russian sailors were invited to join the fun. (Photo by Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
5th September 1931: A group of sailors from the naval vessel HMS Vernon carrying out a torpedo during a stay in Portsmouth. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
12th January 1941: Sailors helping to extinguish the still smouldering debris from a bomb raid on Portsmouth. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
5th September 1931: A group of sailors from the HMS Vernon being instructed in the workings of a mine during a stay at Portsmouth. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
August 1927: In Nelson period uniforms sailors and marines climbing the rigging aboard HMS Victory. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
5th September 1931: Sailors on board the naval vessel HMS Vernon attend a class on the use of depth charges during a stay at Portsmouth. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)
Vectis, the bulldog mascot of the Royal Naval Barracks at Portsmouth, poses with Able Seaman D. Josey of the 'HMS Victory'. Vectis is a familiar sight to the local inhabitants, for he accompanies the sailors on all their parades. Despite his ferocious appearance, which doesn't fool anyone, Vectis is a great favourite at the Barracks and can always find someone willing to take him for a walk, or make a fuss of him. Josey comes from Newbury (Berks). (Photo by William Vanderson/Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
13th June 1953: Rose Lamb (left) and Betty Brickwood share an umbrella with Victor Kapovitch (2nd left) and Vladimir Michicovitch of the Russian Navy, in Portsmouth for the Coronation Naval Review. (Photo by George W. Hales/Fox Photos/Getty Images)
US sailors aboard the USS Colorado, a Colorado-class battleship, during World War One, Portsmouth, Great Britain, circa 1914-1918. (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)
Circa 1910: Sailors exercising as part of their training on Whale Island, Portsmouth. (Photo by F J Mortimer/Getty Images)
26th September 1933: Three Royal Navy sailors from H M S Excellent holding a pig at Whale Island, Portsmouth. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images)