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article imageArk Royal for sale on MoD website

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By Lynn Curwin     Mar 29, 2011 in World
The recently decommissioned aircraft carrier HMS Ark Royal is now being advertised for sale online by the Ministry of Defence.
The 10,000 tonne ship, which was launched by the Queen in 1981, was decommissioned this year as part of the government’s budget cuts.
"Requests for viewing MUST be submitted in writing no later than Wednesday 27th April together with a brief outline of your intentions regarding the vessel," states the information on the edisposals website.
Viewings will be arranged for May 3 and 4, at the Portsmouth Naval Base, with tender closure on June 13.
The BBC reported that proposals for the ship include turning it into a heliport, a base for security personnel during the London Olympics, a school or a nightclub. It could also end up as scrap.
HMS Invincible was towed to a scrapyard in Turkey last week, after being sold through the online site.
"We need to be assured of the viability of the person or organization...including how they intend to store, maintain and dispose of the ship before the sale can be agreed," the Financial Times (registration required) quoted MoD Defence Equipment and Support spokesman Tim Foreman as saying.
The Daily Mail reported that the MoD hopes to get at least £2million for the vessel.
The Ark Royal, which was considered the flagship of the Royal Navy, took part in active service during the second Gulf War and in the Balkans.
The ship's final homecoming into her home port of Portsmouth, in December, was an emotional event for the crew and members of the public who gathered for her return.
The Queen Elizabeth class of aircraft carrier is to replace the Ark Royal, but it will not be in service until about 2020.
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