The battle to save Nelson's historic wooden warship begins
The final mast was removed from HMS Victory today as part of the restoration work taking place on Lord Nelson’s flagship.
This is the first time she’ll been seen without her top masts since 1944. It’s also the first time HMS Victory has undergone extensive restoration since the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805.
“Interestingly, with her topmasts are down, Victory will look much as she did after the Battle of Trafalgar when she had to be towed to Gibraltar for repairs,” said Professor Dominic Tweddle, director general of the National Museum of the Royal Navy.
“We are delighted that the MoD has given the go ahead for the work on Victory,” said Professor Tweddle. “Preserving a wooden warship is a battle, a battle against nature and just as epic in its way as the Battle of Trafalgar. To be able to witness how that battle is fought will be a big draw to visitors.”
Visitors to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard will get the chance to see how sailing warships were built and maintained thanks to new interactive exhibition called Bones of Oak & Iron – Beneath Victory’s Skin.
This free exhibition explores how she was preserved and cared for in war and peace, and explains the current restoration process that will span the next decade.
Watch the video for the exhibition:
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