HMS Victory will be handed over to the National Museum of the Royal Navy after its charitable trust, set up to look after the Portsmouth ship, secured a £25 million windfall.
© Crown. Photo: Kaz Williams
The Gosling Foundation’s investment will be matched by the Ministry of Defence, ensuring the preservation of Nelson’s flagship at the Battle of Trafalgar as “the centrepiece of the nation’s maritime heritage.”
“This is fantastic news,” said Admiral Sir Jonathon Band, the Chairman of the museum.
“We are the ideal charity to oversee the Trust that will be looking after this world-famous historic warship.
“The Headquarters of the museum are adjacent to the ship on a site where there has been a naval museum presence for more than 100 years.
The Museum’s mission is both to educate and enhance the experience of the many millions of visitors to HMS Victory by displaying many of the artefacts relating to the ship and the Battle of Trafalgar.”
The agreement seems to make sense given the Victory’s position at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, where it has stood for 90 years and is neighboured by the Mary Rose and HMS Warrior.
“It will significantly enhance the way in which Victory can be preserved for the benefit of the nation and future generations, while retaining her links with the Royal Navy,” said Vice Admiral Charles Montgomery, the Second Sea Lord.
She will be in the hands of an organisation which will look after her unique status and has all the professional experience that her continued and enhanced preservation requires. I am absolutely delighted with this initiative.”
The Trust’s immediate responsibilities will include overseeing the most extensive restoration to the ship since it returned from Trafalgar in 1805, initiated when BAE Systems Surface Ships were awarded a £16 million support contract in October 2011.