Navy anchor moves to a new home in Gosport

The anchor is gently lowered into place
The anchor is gently lowered into place
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A LANDMARK feature in Gosport has been given a new home.

A five-tonne anchor was lowered into place on the corner of Grove Road and Sealark Road in Hardway yesterday.

The anchor came from the Royal Navy sailing frigate HMS Trincomalee.

The ship was later renamed Foudroyant and was moored in Portsmouth Harbour more than 20 years ago.

Ward councillor for Hardway, Cllr Roger Allen, said: ‘It is wonderful to see it in place. It’s not completed yet but the anchor is in place so now it’s just a case of putting the finishing touches on it.

‘There will be a couple of benches and some planting to be done.

‘For four years now I’ve been campaigning to get the anchor sited on the corner there.

‘I said I wanted it on the corner of Grove Road and Sealark Road as an ideal way to promote Hardway’s heritage. Foudroyant sat just off Gosport as a training ship and that’s where the anchor came from. I’m always looking for ways to promote Hardway and make it better.’

The anchor used to be sited outside the old Gosport library in High Street.

When the library was transformed into the Discovery Centre in 2004, the anchor was moved to the Explosion! Museum.

Children from nearby St John’s Primary School helped design the area where the anchor now sits.

Deputy headteacher Carolyn Wilkinson said: ‘It’s absolutely amazing for the children. We asked the school council and the eco-council to get together and design something for the little area across the road.

‘They chose a sea theme with shingle and they wanted either an anchor or a compass there.

‘We try to do a lot of work with the community and we are teaching them right now about looking after our area. So for them to have been able to design something which has then been put into place is fantastic.’

The relocation of the ship’s anchor was funded by Barratt Homes and carried out by environmental charity Groundwork Solent. HMS Foudroyant, which later returned to her old name, was towed out of the harbour in 1986 and is now a tourist attraction in Hartlepool.