After the sad death of Prince Roy it's high time we made peace with The Principality of Sealand. Yes some bloody battles have been fought but perhaps now with the passing of Prince Roy we can forge ahead. More info, if you need it: The Birth of Sealand In 1966 Roy Bates a former infantry major in the first battalion Royal Fusiliers whose regimental headquarters strangely enough was the Tower of London decided to take over the fortress. It was Christmas Eve 1966. Roy smarting from a legal battle with the British government over his offshore radio station Radio Essex which had broadcast from another abandoned fortress that was found by the British courts to be within UK jurisdiction. These stations were known affectionately by the press as Pirate radio stations and were much loved by the British public as they supplied everything that the BBC did not at the time, Pop music and amusing presenters. Roy never did bring his radio station back to life but instead after taking much advice from his lawyers had the idea to declare this fortress island the independent state of Sealand. Claiming Jus Gentium over a part of the globe that was Terra Nullius. 2nd of September 1967 along with his son Michael (14), daughter Penelope (16) and several friends and followers Roy declared The Principality of Sealand raising a newly designed flag and making his beautiful wife Princess Joan. It was her birthday and Roy gave her the best and most romantic present he could think of the title of Princess. Initial Challenge to Sealand's Sovereignty. t was not long before the British Government decided they could not have what ministers described as a possible Cuba off the east coast of England. They sent the military out to destroy other forts that were left in international waters. The Bates family looked on as huge explosions sent the massive structures hundreds of feet in the air and debris floated past for days. Helicopters that had carried the explosives buzzed above and the navy tug carrying the demolition crew passed close by and shouted Youre next!. A while later a government vessel passed close by its crew shouting threatening obscenities at Michael and his sixteen year old sister. Warning shots were fired across the bow of the boat and it raced away towards the UK. Since Roy was still a British citizen a summons was issued under the fire arms act and on the 25th of November 1968. Roy and Michael were in the dock of the Crown court of Chelmsford assizes in Essex. There was much argument and laws going back to the 17th century were called upon. During his summing up the judge said This is a swash buckling incident perhaps more akin to the time of Sir Francis Drake but it is my judgment is that the UK courts have no jurisdiction. This was Sealands first de facto recognition. Contact details are as follows: Bureau of Internal Affairs, Principality of Sealand, SEALAND 1001 (c/o Sealand Post Bag, IP11 9SZ, UK).