Breaking news: Albion to become commando carrier

HMS Albion
HMS Albion
Arch Deacon with his petiton against mixed-sex wards

THIS WEEK IN 1996: Proposals to end mixed-sex wards

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Recent reference here to the carrier HMS Albion and HMS Ceylon triggered further memories from former Evening News naval correspondent Tim King.

He sent me his cuttings from various stories concerning the ships, including two filed on the same morning for that evening’s paper.

Tim says: ‘I wrote many stories about the carrier and her sister ship HMS Bulwark.

‘I’d got the story about her being converted into a commando carrier on the same day as HMS Nubian went down the slipway.’

‘Note I said ‘‘same day’’. That meant two stories for that day’s paper.’

He adds: ‘In the homecoming story about HMS Albion you’ll see it was the final voyage for the Fleet Air Arm’s frontline fighters, the Sea Hawks, Sea Venoms and Skyraiders.’

Tim was also present at the handover of the Second World War cruiser HMS Ceylon. She was sold to Peru in February 1960.

HMS Bulwark emerging after a refit from Portsmouth's dry dock in 1968

HMS Bulwark emerging after a refit from Portsmouth's dry dock in 1968