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Photographer snaps historic moment

KEEN Middleton Camera Club member Carl Smith got up well before dawn to photograph Britain’s biggest warship.


Carl Smith joined the thousands of spectators on Portsmouth’s waterfront to capture the arrival of HMS Queen Elizabeth in her home port, pictured above. He left home about 5.10am last Wednesday and drove to Gunwharf Quays before walking to the vantage point of the Round Tower.


“It was already full, apparently from about 4am onwards, but with some persuasive talking to the security guards, they kindly squeezed me in,” he said.


“It was quite crowded on the tower and along the walls as far as one could see and, although stuck at the back of the crowd, by standing on the benches we could all see pretty well.”


He could glimpse the floating leviathian – weighing 77,800 tonnes – in the haze beyond the Solent forts as she began to make her way in.


“Born and raised on the Isle of Wight, I have seen many of the great ships passing through the Solent over the years, and I find them fascinating to watch and enjoy.


“This was an event I had to see. It’s an exciting experience to be part of welcoming a great British ship and a very proud moment for Portsmouth and the Royal Navy.”


Carl also spent several years commuting to Portsmouth’s College of Technology to train as an electronics engineer and ran his own business before he retired.

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