HMS Ark Royal returns home to Greenpeace protests in 1988
The warmth of the welcome home to Portsmouth for aircraft carried HMS Ark Royal overwhelmed a nuclear weapons protest by Greenpeace and the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament.Â
Families and friends lined the water front and waved as the Ark, Britain's largest warship, returned home after six months deployment to the Far East and Australia.Â
There were emotional quayside reunions for the companiesÂ of both Ark Royal and her sister carrier HMS Illustrious which arrivedÂ home for Christmas after their globe-circlingÂ tours.Â But families were joined by peace protesters.Â
Ark Royal, dogged by similar anti-nuclear protests during her world tour, was escorted in from the Solent by twoÂ Greenpeace inflatable dinghies, carrying '˜Keep the Seas Nuclear-Free' banners.Â Ark Royal had been prevented from docking in Malta, was met with protests in Sydney and strikes in Melbourne.
On board the carrier, Rear AdmiralÂ Peter Woodhead said: '˜They are perfectly entitled to come out in protest but I hope they are open toÂ discussing the issue.'Â '‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹'‹