Departs Southampton on Trafalgar Day

The tall ship Lord Nelson has begun an around-the-world voyage with its disabled crew.

The ship, operated by the Jubilee Sailing Trust (JST), departed Southampton on Sunday, setting sail for Rio de Janeiro, from where it will head onto Cape Town.

It began the journey on Trafalgar Day, which marked the 207th anniversary of the death of the vessel’s eponymous vice-admiral and the Royal Navy’s defeat of the French and Spanish fleets in the Battle of Trafalgar.

It set sail for Brazil at 11.50am, the time that Horatio Nelson hoisted his final flag signal to the fleet at Trafalgar.

The circumnavigation is expected to take two years and will visit 30 countries and all seven continents.

Chris Phillips, who skippered Lord Nelson in this year’s Tall Ship Race, told PBO: ‘We were asked to send one of our ships to Australia for the centenary celebrations of the Australian Navy and there is a Tall Ships Race at the same time, so that kicked the whole thing off.

‘We are doing it via all the Great Capes and the traditional tall ships route.’

Alex Lochrane, JST chief executive, said: ‘This is no pleasure cruise – our crew will be working together to guide Lord Nelson across the Atlantic and then around the world.

‘We are delighted to be able to give both disabled and able-bodied people the opportunity to take on massive challenges and push their boundaries.’

Tall ships set sail from Waterford to Greenock.

Scottish tall ship faces destruction in Hawaii.

A Royal start to the Tall Ships Race in Devon.