Patrick Roy Bates,¬†better-known as Prince Roy of Sealand ‚Äď the title he awarded himself ¬†‚Äď died earlier this month at the age of 91 in Leigh-on-Sea,Essex, UK. ¬† In 1967, Major Roy Bates, a veteran of WWII, occupied a derelict concrete offshore WW2 anti-aircraft gun platform off the east coast of England. He declared it the Principality of Sealand. ¬†Being only about half the size of an Olympic swimming pool, Bates declared it to be “the world’s smallest independent state.” He also declared himself “His Royal Highness, Prince Roy of Sealand.” ¬† His son was dubbed Prince Michael, and wife and daughters became Princesses Joan and Penny.¬†¬†The new principality is in international waters about seven miles off the coast of the British container port of Felixstowe. ¬†Thanks¬†to Alaric Bond for passing the news along.
Even though Prince Roy is gone, one may still purchase a noble title from the¬†principality¬†as well as other goods including coffee mugs, tee shirts, identity cards and email addresses. ¬†Becoming a¬†Lord, Lady, Baron or Baroness starts at¬†¬£29.99, while becoming a Count or Countess will set you back¬†¬£199.99.