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Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 25th February 2020.

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Photo of Luke Pollard Luke Pollard Shadow Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of raising the anchors of HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse for posterity before they are removed from the seabed by metal scavengers.

Photo of James Heappey James Heappey The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Defence

The Ministry of Defence considers the wrecks of our warships to be the final resting place of our servicemen.

While we have assessed that recovery of the anchors from HMS PRINCE OF WALES and HMS REPULSE could be possible, this would require significant planning and considerable resource, both in retrieval and in conserving them for display. Recovery would also be counter to our stance of not disturbing our wrecks, in honour of those who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

The Ship's Bells from both ships were visible alongside the respective wrecks and were recovered. They are now held as lasting memorials, and for the benefit of the nation, by the National Museum of the Royal Navy.

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