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Guardian: "HMS Ark Royal Could Be Turned Into Artificial Diving Reef"


War Hero
Super Moderator
This was on the local news last night. The bloke organising it said they'd cut at least 100 holes in the sides as escape routes which would have rope guidlines with reflective red triangles on to assist divers in difficulty to get out.

Seems like a good idea to me.


War Hero
I know nothing of diving or marine wildlife and sustaining such things but the idea sounds cool and surely it would be nicer to have her in our waters than ripped up, totally scrapped or sold to elsewhere??


War Hero
Super Moderator
The boost to local economy from the diving community that the Scylla has created is the big selling point which is why the council is backing it.


War Hero
Has to be better than an oily Indian beach, I suppose, but have they really exhausted all the alternative uses that could be thought of ?


War Hero
Book Reviewer
Yep HMS Scylla at Whitsands Bay. Sceptics sunk the carrier USS Oriskany for the same reason.

I've dived on Scylla. Its weird finning around spaces that you used to walk around. A good dive site that will become better as time goes on


War Hero
Yep, sounds like a great idea - BUT. I am a diver, so, my 2p worth.

It will cost an absolute fortune to make it environmentally clean then safe for divers.

If the top of the 'structure' is 10m below the surface, then this means that the flight deck will be about 40m below the surface, which for the majority of divers 'is about it'. So all the best bits will be at a depth, though possible on air, but not advisable. Some loonies will however try.... So there will be fatalities. Also, those with more technical gear capable of diving safely in excess of say 50m and over (or under!) have a VERY expensive hobby and so will not be diving it regularly.

Six miles offshore is a bit of a flog for a boat full of divers. Also, it would place the wreck in the sea lanes, which even with adequate bouyage etc, will cause a problem.

Now, if they were o rip the island off and use it as one 'wreck' site, then sink the hull (with the roof showing!) then, from a diver's perspective, game on!

So, sadly, don't hold your breath - pun intended! It ain't going to happen. Razor blades it is.
Have to agree with you there SB. When I first started diving I had dreams of diving some of the famous wrecks and such like, problem is when you start to learn a little about the risks involved and the cost to do it properly it's quite horrific. I personally now have no desire to dive much beyond 30 meters so if it was sunk as a whole then I would certainly miss out.
She might be more useful as prison ship. SB sums up the practicalities of the divers' playground option quite well. Is the primary intention to create a a safe place for marine life to flourish, though?


War Hero
:DA bit of a radical idea, but as she is VSTOL and already afloat, pusser must have some spares, why don't MOD buy some harriers to put on it .....we have a carrier!:D


Why is everyone obsessed with sinking her? The ship is a national treasure and could be put to much better use. How many of our famous ships still survive? Virtually none because everyone wants to scrap them or sink them. The yanks have some amazing museum ships while we have Victory and Mary Rose and the odd other. Why sink it for a select few who have an expensive hobby, I'm sure thousands of people would happily pay £5-£10 for a wander around her.
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