Chichester historian hopes to have found Henry V warship Holigost

Ian Friel pictured at home in Chichester
Ian Friel pictured at home in Chichester

GLOBAL excitement was triggered this week by the revelation a Chichester author may have located a missing warship of Henry V.

Historian Ian Friel, of Westhampnett Road, has just released his book Henry V’s Navy.

Ian Friel's new book Henry V's Navy

Ian Friel's new book Henry V's Navy

In it, the former Littlehampton and Chichester museum curator says the warship Holigost, which took part in the Battle of Agincourt, may be beneath the River Hamble at Bursledon, in Hampshire.

“I’m amazed,” he said when asked what he made of the national coverage this week.

“I thought that there would be mild interest but the story apparently has been picked up all over the world.

“There are articles in the Times, Guardian, Independent, Daily Mail and the Telegraph. It’s been on BBC radio and ITV Meridian.”

In addition, he said companies in Australia, the USA and beyond had also used it.

“We’ve yet to get confirmation that this is the Holigost but I think there’s a real possibility it is,” he said.

Henry V had four great warships: Holigost, Trinity Royal, Jesus and Grace Dieu.

“Certainly, Holigost and Trinity Royal took part in two major battles that really broke French naval opposition,” said Ian.

He spoke of his excitement that Historic England is due to carry out a sonar study of the stretch of river next year.

Ian carried out a lot of the research at the National Maritime Museum, in Greenwich, and the National Archives at Kew. He was principal curator at Chichester District Museum from 2002-2007.

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