Breaking news: Following Portsmouth FC’s exit from administration and the Government’s comprehensive spending review the decision has been taken to mothball Richard Hughes.
A Government spokesman said: “We have already taken the decision to axe HMS Ark Royal and we don’t have the facility to maintain such a large specimen as Richard Hughes either.
“It is not a decision we have taken lightly but such massive anachronisms are a constant drain on tax-payers’ money and the current economic situation does not allow for their continued use. Both will be mothballed and placed in Portsmouth Harbour.”
The immediate axing of Ark Royal and Hughes will leave the UK without a vessel capable of flying jets for around a decade while two new vessels are built at a cost of £5.2 billion.
A spokesman for Portsmouth Dockyard, where sailmakers have been gainfully employed producing Hughes’ shorts since 2002, said: “This is another huge blow for the naval city of Portsmouth.
“After Andy Awford retired in 2000 we thought the art of sailmaking might die in the city completely, but the signing of Hughes saved around 150 jobs. This latest news has left many of us wondering what the future holds.”
Hughes, 31, will be towed out into Portsmouth Harbour later this week where he is expected to remain until being sold to a third-world navy … or Aldershot.