HMS Hercules dressed up to the nines then stripped of all finery – Nostalgia

HMS Hercules pictured in 1902, perhaps dressed for the Coronation. Photo:Robert James collection.
HMS Hercules pictured in 1902, perhaps dressed for the Coronation. Photo:Robert James collection.
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The following photographs, above and below, come from my regular correspondent and postcard collector supreme Robert James of Milton.

They are of HMS Hercules – a central-battery ironclad of the Royal Navy launched in 1868.

HMS  Hercules after de-masting and unarmed. By this point she had possibly become part of HMS Fisgard. Photo: Robert James collection.

HMS Hercules after de-masting and unarmed. By this point she had possibly become part of HMS Fisgard. Photo: Robert James collection.

After various commissions she was held in reserve at Portsmouth until 1904.

She changed her name to Calcutta in 1904 and served as a depot ship at Gibraltar until 1914 when she was towed back to Portsmouth and became Artificers Training Establishment Fisgard II. By this time lacking masts, funnels, armament and superstructure.

She is pictured, above,  in 1902 perhaps dressed for the coronation of Edward VII. 

The coronation was to take place in June of that year but as the King was ill it was put back until August so perhaps that is when this photograph was taken.  

Charlotte Street market in the 1970s when it still had a marvellous atmosphere. Photo: Tony Triggs collection.

Charlotte Street market in the 1970s when it still had a marvellous atmosphere. Photo: Tony Triggs collection.

The picture, below, is possibly HMS Hercules after being deflowered and her guns and masts removed. I dread to think what conditions must have been like on board her.

If anyone can tell me more about her, I would be glad to know. 

Charlotte Street market has all but disappeared with just a few traders selling goods at the top end of Commercial Road precinct. Those of us of a certain age will remember it like this,  especially on a Friday and Saturday.

I can count at least 21 stalls and lorries selling everything from fruit and veg to butchers and crockery merchants.

All the goods are stored on the opposite side of the road. The photograph, below, comes from Portsmouth – A Shattered City by former News sub-editor Tony Triggs