Monday, June 12, 2006
Recently we had the excellent news that the SS Great Britain has been awarded the prestigious Gulbenkian Award and I can do no better than to quote: "It combines a truly groundbreaking piece of conservation, remarkable engineering and fascinating social history plus a visually stunning ship above and below the water line. Most importantly, the ss Great Britain is accessible and highly engaging for people of all ages." Lord Robert Winston, Chairman of the Gulbenkian judges 2006.
I have been on board several times over the years but not since the latest phase of conservation. In fact I had thought to myself that considering the state of the rusty ironwork and rotten wood within the ship, that I could never be saved, given our often damp climate. I was of course wrong and so much has been done over the last few years.
When I was in Port Stanley six months ago I saw the mizzen mast of the ship [top photo] and this gives some idea of the state of preservation at the start of the project. Now the ship has six splendid new masts and provides a fine view as one drives into Bristol city from the west along Hotwells Road. [bottom picture]