"Recommendations for the names of new ships are made by the Ships Names and Badges Committee, whose selections are passed through the First Sea Lord and Ministers before final approval by Her Majesty the Queen. I have ensured that the Chairman of this Committee is aware of the views of you and your fellow petitioners so that the name IRON LADY may be considered when a suitable vessel comes to be named in future.
The last politician to be recognised by having a vessel named after them was Sir Winston Churchill, after whom the nuclear submarine HMS CHURCHILL was named in 1968, three years after Sir Winston's death. The only previous record of a vessel being named after a former Prime Minister is HMS WALPOLE, a W Class destroyer launched in 1918, some 180 years after the death of Sir Robert Walpole.
You may be aware that Baroness Thatcher recently visited No10 Downing Street to meet the Prime Minister. He asked her, and she has graciously agreed, to sit for a portrait which will hang in Downing Street on a permanent basis. The only other 20th century Prime Ministers whose portraits currently hang in Downing Street are David Lloyd George and Sir Winston Churchill."