NOSTALGIA: Home to Portsmouth and a hero's welcome

Yachtsman Alec Rose received a hero's welcome as he sailed into Portsmouth after his 354-day round-the-world trip.

Monday, 19th March 2018, 8:01 pm
Lively Lady amid the welcome-home flotilla of 400 small vessels off Southsea.All pictures: Graham Stevens

The 59-year-old was escorted into the city on July 4, 1968, by 400 motor-boats, yachts, catamarans and canoes blowing sirens and whistles.

A crowd of more than 250,000 people had gathered to congratulate the Southsea greengrocer on his 28,500-mile solo trip around the globe.

Anyone who was there that momentous day will never forget it, and as the 50th anniversary approaches, the city is planning several events to pay tribute to Sir Alec, who was knighted the day after his homecoming.

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The family greengrocer's in Osborne Road, Southsea, decorated for the occasion.

Mention of those plans on these pages prompted Graham Stevens to find his pictures from that day.

A gun was fired from the Royal Albert Yacht Club at 11.52am as Mr Rose crossed the finishing line in his 36ft pale blue ketch Lively Lady.

And as the weary seafarer stepped ashore at 12.33pm he was presented with a telegram from the Queen.

It read: ‘Warmest congratulations on your magnificent voyage. Welcome home - Elizabeth and Philip.’

The welcoming committee.
Part of the huge crowd at Southsea on July 4, 1968.
Alec Rose amid part of the welcoming reception on the Guildhalls steps.
Alec Rose and his wife Dorothy are driven to the Guildhall in a Rolls-Royce where the yachtsman spoke to reporters.
The family greengrocer's in Osborne Road, Southsea, decorated for the occasion.
The welcoming committee.
Part of the huge crowd at Southsea on July 4, 1968.
Alec Rose amid part of the welcoming reception on the Guildhalls steps.
Alec Rose and his wife Dorothy are driven to the Guildhall in a Rolls-Royce where the yachtsman spoke to reporters.