Monday, May 21, 2007

The death of a grand old lady


A sad day today as the Cutty Sark (one of the most famous landmarks in London) goes up in flames. I remember visiting the Cutty Sark as a small child and being totally in awe of this vast ship - it must have seemed a lot bigger to a small child I guess but it is a sad day to hear the BBC Radio commentator referring to a charred and burnt out hulk. I suspect the Heritage Lottery Fund (or whatever they are called this week) will be receiving an application for funds to restore this grand old lady.
  • She is the most famous ship in the world
  • She is the epitome of the great age of sail
  • She is the only surviving extreme clipper, and the only tea clipper still in existence.
  • Most of her hull fabric survives from her original construction and she is the best example of a merchant composite construction vessel.
  • She has captured the imagination of millions of people, 15 million of whom have come on board to learn the stories she has to tell.
  • She was preserved in Greenwich partly as a memorial to the men of the merchant navy, particularly those who lost their lives in the world wars.
  • She is one of the great sights of London.

Statement of Significance

  • She is the world’s sole surviving extreme clipper, a type of vessel that was the highest development of the fast commercial sailing ship, with the majority of her hull fabric surviving from her original construction.
  • She is internationally appreciated for her beauty and is one of the most famous ships in the world.
  • Her fine lines – a considerable part of her appeal – are defined by her frames which form part of the vessel’s composite construction; a construction technique of which she is the best surviving example and of which she is of exceptional quality.
  • She has captured the imagination of millions of people, 15 million of whom have come on board to learn the stories she has to tell.
  • She is a gateway to the World Heritage Site at Greenwich and is a key asset to both the World Heritage Site and the Borough of Greenwich.
  • As a tea clipper, she is tangible evidence of the importance of tea in 19th century trade and cultural life.

3 comments:

Peter Mc said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peter Mc said...

Sorry to see her burn, but I doubt the claim that she's the most famous ship in the world. I have a vested interest in claiming HMS Beagle ahead of her, but would disinterestly also add Titanic and HMS Victory.

msdemmie said...

This is such a shame - I remember being awed by here when I visited as a child.