UPDATE – Sorry to disappoint everyone, but I’ve now found out that this was an April Fools Day Hoax!
New evidence discovered in the Royal Naval Museum’s archives has shown that HMS Victory, Nelson’s Flagship at the Battle of Trafalgar, was afloat in 1933 for that year’s Navy Week.
While researching Navy Days the Museum’s Head Curator found a logbook kept by a young officer onboard HMS Hood, the famous battlecruiser that was based in Portmouth at the time:
‘The entire Gunroom has had the good fortune to be appointed to the … Victory, which is due to sail for a fortnight’s cruise.’
Previously it had been thought that Victory had entered dry dock in 1922, and had remained there ever since. This fascinating new evidence suggests that in fact 11 years later, with a degree of towing, she managed to sail as far as Dover. The young officer commented further:
‘the greatest advantage gained in this fortnight is the unique experience of how a square-rigged ship – especially the old heavy bluff-bowed type – was handled’
Navy Week began in 1927, and was the forerunner of Navy Days. This years event takes place from 30 July to 1 August in Portsmouth Naval Base.