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Posted on Jul 16, 2005 in Front Page Features, Stuff We Like

International Festival of the Sea 2005

Armchair General

Here are some of the larger vessels on show. Some of these were also remote controlled and had fully functional weapons and smoke dischargers to indicate battle during mock battles. I wish I had the patience (and the money) to build something like this; it was obvious that they were true labours of love.

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A beautiful model of a modern aircraft carrier – and some ships in bottles!

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Some of the models were huge dioramas – this is an excellent model of one of the Mulberry Harbours as used in Operation Overlord. Next to it, a fine model of HMS Victory, one of many scattered around the hall.

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And this just had to be seen – every model here is made from nothing but matchsticks and matchstick boxes – and all by one man. It’s a truly incredible sight that defies belief. Each ship is to scale with every other ship and totally scratch built. Incredible.

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Moving on from model ships, numerous stalls were set out all throughout the base where naval fans could purchase any number of items such as ship and military memorabilia, clothing, or even nameplates for their own private vessels.

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In addition, entertainment was provided for all the visitors, including musical performances and large screens broadcasting information about upcoming events or relevant current affairs, oh, and a few corporate trailers for anyone who might be on the lookout for some modern weapons technology. I toyed with the idea of asking for credit to buy an entire missile system, but decided it wasn’t worth spending the afternoon being interrogated by security.

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This chap was giving a diving exhibition in a large glass tank – and alleged through his radio link that his colleagues would not let him out. For all I know, he’s still there…

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Pirates! Arrrr! Still, I don’t think the modern fleet assembled had anything to worry about from these guys…

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1 Comment

  1. The uniforms were all made by Keith Levett, livery tailor of Savile Row, who is standing the other side of Captain Hardy, and portraying Captain Thomas Troubridge, and beyond he, and also in your second photo, Captain James de Saumarez!
    Wonderful to see those photos.
    Yours aye,
    Alex Naylor (aka Nelson!) Keith also made the Full Dress uniform which is now on board HMS Victory and also the undress one in the Nelson Museum in Monmouth. They are precise replicas of the originals.

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