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Sealand Flag Sealand Radio - Part 2 Sealand Flag

Issue 2: Date: 20th January 2021

The 1970's - 1980's with photographs from the Bates family archive

Sealand was to make its mark during the 1970's the legality of the so called independant state was questioned, forces moved to evict Roy, his family and representatives

Joan Modelling

Roy's wife Joan had worked as a successful model, above showing furs for the Fort!

Michael 'Mum modelling for "Higgs Furs" in the 70's, when it was ok to wear fur.' 'As I was a young lad about town there was a club called 'The Talk of the South' where people like Shirley Bassey would perform, it is now called TOTS.'
'This picture used to hang on the wall in the foyer, I would take girlfriends there to walk past picture of my mother staring down at me!'

3.7" gun south end of fort

3.7" Gun trained on Harwich lashings are part of the winch system


The 'Seafrieghtliner' pictured in the mid-seventies

Say's Michael 'The Seafrieghter's skipper was originally on the old Suffolk Train Ferry from Harwich to the Hook of Holland.' 'I believe his name was Captain Wylde, he befriended Sealand as he moved up through his career through bigger and more modern ships' 'I've actually shaken his hand from the wing of his bridge as he passed.' 'Every Christmas they tried to get a turkey and some beers across'

Seafrieghtliner pulls away

Joan watches the The 'Seafrieghtliner' pull away

'Same ship another time. We nick named him "Ginger" but he was grey by the time he finished'

'Newspapers would come flying through the air and messages tied to bolts.' 'He was a great supportive friend to me although I never met him away from Sealand Mum and Dad did'

Action came again in 1978, not from Britain but Germany, a strange twist as the Fort's had been constructed to defend against their invasion

1978 raid press shot

Press Picture the unfolding drama (1978)

Aided by Dutch forces the Fort was taken on behalf of Alexander Achenbach, a German lawyer from Aachen who proclaimed himself Prime Minister of Sealand. Michael is held prisoner, he's released and dumped on a beach in Holland, making his way home joined the party that liberated Sealand and in turn kept Putz one of the invaders prisoner

German Prisoner

Press Picture Roy shows the German prisoners (1978)

Sealand Fort team

Michael, Joan, Roy, Captain John Crewdson, Gordon Wilkinson (Willy) and Barry Harcus (1978)

'Michael with the exception of his Mother is the team that carried out helicopter assault: 'Willy my best mate, Barry a good friend plus John and Gordon all sadly no longer alive'

'John Crewdson the pilot who had flown in many Bond films, was very proud that this was the first time real guns were pointed at him!'

Women's Own 18th November 1978

Woman's Own (18th November 1978)

Women's Own 18th November 1978 Women's Own 18th November 1978 Women's Own 18th November 1978

Right Click Full Image: Woman's Own (18th November 1978)

HMS Egeria

The 'HMS Egeria' a small navy inshore minesweeper used as a hydro-graphics boat taking soundings & positions for Admiralty charts

'HMS Egeria pushed in closer and closer as I waved them away.' Mum and I felt very threatened, eventually I cut loose with a full magazine of 9mm across her bow quite impressive to see on a very calm day.'

'They backed off in a cloud off urgent black smoke, this event never made the news!'

St Edumund dwarfs sealand

An incredible photograph of the Harwich Sealink Ferry 'St Edmund' passing east of Sealand, note helicopter on Tower (1979)

Michael 'The picture of the St Edmund was taken on Willy & Karen's wedding day in the summer of 1979, Willy and I had spent months painting the place up in readiness'. 'Yes "Ginger" has worked his way up through the ranks and they have given him a bigger ship.' 'He delayed sailing goodness knows how so he could attend with the Harwich Hook of Holland ferry as the bride arrived by helicopter'

Penny Bates Robbie Dawson with Bahadur

Penny Bates (1979)

Sealander Robbie Dawson dressed for the wedding with German Shepherd (Alsatian) Guard dog 'Bahadur'(1979)

'Willy asked me if he could get married on Sealand, he'd lived and worked for us for years from the age of 16'. 'Roby had to be left behind in tears of frustration at Southend airport when we did the assault in '78 due to lack of space in the helicopter'

Roy & Michael Bates at Christmas 1981

'Cheers' Christmas on Sealand with the flag, tree, and a beer for Michael and a short for Roy

Michael 'Note my shoulder holster with an automatic pistol in it and lack of beer gut not to mention I had hair then'

It was in the 1980's that rumblings of a Local South East television relay from Sealand were being discussed, nothing was to come of the proposal

Una Stubbs & Joan Bates

Una Stubbs and Joan Bates about to depart Sealand in style (1982)

Michael 'It's Una Stubbs behind in the orange immersion suit who played the scare crow in Worzel Gummidge a very charming lady'

Beam Trawler off Sealand 1985

Newspaper image of Sealand said to be 1985 but could be earlier

Una Stubbs & Joan Bates

Sealand with a Beam Trawler between North leg and the East Cardinal Buoy (1985)

Trawler Registration looks like OM or UM 50 which deoesn't equate to Fishing Boat Codes

Sealand 1986

Sealand - Theo Dencker (1986)

London Standard 5th August 1986

London Standard (5th August 1986) Click for large image

Sealand 1986

Sealand with Michael Bates foreground (1986)

The next radio proposition came from Chris Carey in 1987 when he, Sybil Fennell and Michael sourced gear in England and Holland, buying the 'Radio Paradise' kit from the Dutch authorities who had impounded it

The extension of British Territorial waters and intervention with the risk of a raid, the project was shelved

You can see the equipment intended for Sealand Radio in the Chris Carey Tribute

Sealand Title Pack

For a limited period of time only: To celebrate 30 years of victory over the Dutch and German terrorist invasion of Sealand. The Principality is offering 'Individual Noble Titles' Lord, Lady, Baron and Baroness in recognition of support

During the invasion Prince Michael of Sealand was held prisoner for four days until being landed illegally on the Dutch coast. Sealand launched a counter attack sliding down ropes from a helicopter 100 foot above the raging North Sea to recaptured the fortress island

N.B Also in appreciation for their services to the Principality of Sealand honorary titles are being issued to a select group of supporters, including Danny Wallace, Ben Fogle, Terry Wogan, George Stroumboulopoulos and Jeremy Clarkson

Click on the Link document(s) image above or Sealand seal below

Sealand Seal

This feature does not intend to duplicate information published elsewhere or make legal or otherwise opinions, reference links are provided as applicable

With grateful thanks to Michael Bates for his help in producing this feature which continues in Sealand Radio - Part 3

Sealand History : Clarkson for PM : Sovereignty : More News

News can be found on Sealand Facebook

A VCD sanctioned & approved for release by Prince Michael of Sealand is available with over 150 photographs & history soundtrack tour of Sealand to order your copy go to Offshore Shop

For all the Sealand Features navigate from the ScrapBook Index

[HOME] (c)Bob Le-Roi 2010