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Ship's blaze of glory at Moulton

PUBLISHED: 09:48 09 November 2009 | UPDATED: 15:34 03 July 2010

A Royal Navy ship went out in blaze of glory on Friday in a Norfolk garden - more than 200 years after a bigger version helped Lord Nelson defeat the French at the Battle of Trafalgar.

A Royal Navy ship went out in blaze of glory on Friday in a Norfolk garden - more than 200 years after a bigger version helped Lord Nelson defeat the French at the Battle of Trafalgar.

The 65ft replica of HMS Conqueror, draped in flags, was consumed by the flames as it was blown up to celebrate bonfire night in Moulton St Mary, near Acle.

For the last month former Royal Navy missile engineer Stephen Farrell built the scale model ship out of wooden pallets, old bed sheets and fence posts. It was blown up in his back garden.

Mr Farrell, 53, is no stranger to making unusual models to be destroyed as he has previously built a 40ft rocket, church ruins and a wicker man for Guy Fawkes night.

His latest naval creation is a replica of the 74-gun HMS Conqueror which was captained by Israel Pellow in the 1805 Battle of Trafalgar and captured the French flagship Bucentaure. The model is also surrounded by smaller ships from Lord Nelson's heyday.

Putting the final touches to his model. the father-of-four said: “She is looking grand at the moment. Everyone seems shocked that I will destroy it after all the time I put into it - but it is made from scrap.

“I like to use my creative juices every Guy Fawkes night and try to do something out of the ordinary.”

Mr Farrell, who served on HMS Glamorgan, said that the only problem he encountered making the model ship was when a cardboard mast collapsed because it was not strong enough.

In 2006 he built a 40ft rocket out of recycled material, including a traffic cone and compost bin base, and used liquid hydrogen smoke to simulate its launch before it was set on fire.

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