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Last Updated: Friday, 21 October 2005, 18:52 GMT 19:52 UK
Family's pride at Nelson events
Anna Tribe (right), and her daughter Mary Arthur plant a tree to commemorate victory at the Battle of Trafalgar 200 years ago
Anna Tribe (right), Nelson's great great great granddaughter plants a tree in his memory in London

Lord Nelson's closest living relative has said he "would have loved the pomp" of commemorations marking the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Trafalgar.

Anna Tribe, 75, from Monmouthshire, the admiral's great, great, great grand daughter, said: "He did like to be recognised."

The Queen lit the first of more than 1,000 beacons marking the victory.

The Princess Royal lit the third beacon at HMS Cambria, the royal naval reserve base at Sully, near Barry.

Mrs Tribe, who runs a guest house in Raglan, Monmouthshire, has named her two sons and her daughter after the naval hero.

She is direct descendent of Horatia, the child Nelson had by his affair with Lady Emma Hamilton.

She and her family have taken part in a number of events over the 10-year build up to mark the historic naval victory over the combined French and Spanish fleets at Cape Trafalgar in 1805.

On Friday, she was at the Greenwich naval museum in London - where Nelson was laid in state - as the weekend's Trafalgar 200 celebrations began.

The Princess Royal
The Princess Royal prepares to light the beacon at Sully.

Mrs Tribe also planted a tree in his memory in Whitehall.

She said: "I am sure myself that he would have loved the celebrations. I think he loved that sort of thing, from what we read about him.

"He did like to be recognised and he loved some pomp and ceremony, I'm sure.

"Certainly, wherever I've been, I've found enormous enthusiasm and I gather that that enthusiasm is growing."

However, there was one part of this year's celebrations which left her less than impressed.

A re-enactment of 18th Century naval warfare, held in the Solent in June this year, drew her fire because it pitted reds against blues and not the British against the French and Spanish.

Sully beacon.
The beacon lights up the night sky at HMS Cambria.

Mrs Tribe described the event off Portsmouth, the naval base where Nelson's flagship, HMS Victory, is preserved, as "pretty stupid".

She said: "I am sure the French and Spanish are adult enough to appreciate we did win that battle."

Mrs Tribe has been more welcoming of the estimated 6,000 events planned for this weekend to mark her illustrious ancestor's life, and death.

The highlight of Friday's commemorations is the lighting of more than 1,000 beacons.

The Queen lit the first, aboard HMS Victory. The Princess Royal lit the third principal beacon at HMS Cambria, the royal naval reserve base near Barry, in south Wales.

Meanwhile the Prince of Wales lit a beacon in the Scottish village of Ballater, Aberdeenshire.

HMS Cambria also has a model of the signal mast displaying Nelson's famous message "England expects that every man will do his duty," flown from Victory just prior to the battle commencing.

The toast to Nelson is known as the Immortal Memory and is the only Royal Naval toast where no response is made.

Mrs Tribe, who has Horatia as one of her names, revealed how she used to deliver her own tribute to the admiral whenever she saw Nelson's Column.

She said: "As a child, I used to wave as I went round Trafalgar Square in No 11 bus."


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