HMS Pickle, First With News

The News of Trafalgar, HMS Pickle dramatically raced to be narrowly First to the King.

HMS Pickle
HMS Pickle, First With The News

For Sale, available, 76 x 121 cm (30″ x 48″), offers from € / £ / U S $ 15,000.

One of ‘The Nelson and Trafalgar Series’.

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MarineArt by Gordon Frickers , a memorable enduring and classic painting, created while “Official Artist” for HMS Victory.

I chose to include HMS Pickle in this series for several reasons.

Pickle distinguished herself many times in particular by carrying Admiral Collingwood’s famous Trafalgar Dispatch and she was the sort of size a modern yachtsman can relate to.

This fine painting is a present in London and can be viewed by arrangement.

Any reputable gallery should be delighted to offer you this painting for this price… and are welcome to help you buy this classic painting, a timeless subject.

A Trafalgar Painting researched with the full co-operation of the best authorities on this subject, while I was “Official Artist” for HMS Victory during the run up to the 200th anniversary of a battle that changed history, Trafalgar.

HMS Pickle, first with news” :

This schooner with the unlikely name of HMS Pickle raced dramatically to be narrowly First to the King with The Trafalgar Dispatches, the Official News of Trafalgar.
I sailed on schooners brigs and other ‘traditional’ ships many times, helped build and maintain these craft so have a ‘hands on’ understanding which I rather hope you agree, shines through lending a rare sense of authority.

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The Trafalgar and Pickle Painting

HMS Pickle, described by Nelson as “my eyes” and as “ubiquitous”  is shown here sailing close hauled, beating to windward.

Pickle’s men are reducing sail, an ordinary task for men of that time.

A dangerous task in rough seas and without any safety net.

Men of that period laughed at danger.

They were said to be  by later generations, “iron men in wooden ships”.

Trafalgar Exhibitions :

To date the collection has been exhibited only once, at the private viewing, ‘The Trafalgar Soiree’ at the exclusive Army and Navy Club, St James, Pall Mall, London in The Wellington Room.

The Trafalgar Soiree with Captain M. Nicholson and his son.

Captain Nicholson is the owner of the very active HMS Pickle replica.

The owners of this spirited painting, Victory 2005 Ltd, wish to sell their collection.
Trafalgar Collection are paintings made during or in the aftermath of  the period when i was ‘Official Artist’ to HMS Victory with Victory 2005 Ltd raising awareness of Trafalgar, its meaning and funds to help restore HMS Victory to her Trafalgar condition.

I, Gordon Frickers was honoured to be the only artist ever appointed as “Official Artist” to HMS Victory and working with Victory 2005 Limited.


At that time I painted “HMS Pickle, First With The News”, I wrote “I often include a mini portrait of the owner, crew or friends in a painting, occasionally a self portrait too. In the same mischievous spirit I might include a cat, dog, fish or other detail”.

 An example is you can see my some of friend including the famous Master Mariner Sir Robin Knox-Johnston on the fore deck.

Peter Goodwin Keeper & Curator of HMS Victory and I am there too as is the commander Lieutenant John Richard Lapenotiere.

Maybe YOU will be in the next ‘crew’ painted???


Action :

We the crew are being watched by LAPENOTIERE the Commander who is standing near the helm, and by the boson (‘played’ by Sir Robin K-J) standing in the eyes of the ship.

I extensively researched schooners and cutters of the period, not only British, French, American and Spanish, before starting to create my impressions of HMS Pickle.

That said, as you can see here,  I am interested in more qualities that ‘realism’ or ‘perfectionism’.

My aim is to show something of the human feeling, the ambience and atmosphere; what i don’t want is the sort of highly detailed painting one still often sees and which at art college were referred to as old fashioned chocolate box illustrations.

Both these ‘Pickle’ paintings have been shown many times on the internet and appear in a number of books and other publications.


Second Pickle painting :

On route Trafalgar to London with the Trafalgar Official Dispatches, this is my second painting of HMS Pickle.

I have urgent dispatches being the first painting and is available as a fine art print on canvas for the look and feel of the original.

“I Have Urgent Dispatches” is available from this web site’s print galley as a signed numbered print from £177.00.

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Nelson s Pickle (detail) 21.06.03

Our HMS Pickle was

Present at Trafalgar, ‘Pickle’ was one of the eyes of the fleet and referred to by Nelson as “ubiquitous

the second vessel and by far the most famous Royal Navy ship of the 5 to carry that name.

Nelson s Pickle (detail 2 ) b 21.06.03

A very humane vessel“:

a beautiful story ; during the battle of Trafalgar HMS Pickle’s crew of 32 saved the lives of 160 French people.

When the replica HMS Pickle owned by Captain Mal Nicholson arrived by chance, in difficulties at L’Orient, Brittany, France,  her people were as Mal put it, “a bit anxious about calling in a French port with a ‘Nelson’ vessel”.

They were amazed by their French reception.

The news had spread ‘like lightening’ all over France.

They were greeted by many of the 40,000 descendants of the people her illustrious predecessor, shown in my painting here, had saved during the battle of Trafalgar.

Those people knew HMS Pickle has rescued at great risk to herself and her men, crew from the burning French line of battle ship Achielle which later dramatically ended the Battle of Trafalgar with it’s massive explosion.


I have subsequently painted another 3 pictures of HMS Pickle.


 For more see Useful facts + excellent stories about HMS Pickle, first with the news.


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