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Boats that Built Britain
This exhibition has now closed.
Dates: 8 May–29 October 2010
Location: Micro-gallery, Level G, National Maritime Museum
For centuries ships and boats have enabled us to explore the oceans and earn our living from the sea: they have also played important roles in times of conflict. This exhibition features six vessels filmed for the BBC Four television series Boats that Built Britain. Each tells a particular story about Britain’s relationship with the sea. Read more about the exhibition.
National Historic Ships
The ships Reaper and Cariad are among the over 1200 historic UK ships on the National Register of Historic Vessels, which is managed by government-funded advisory body National Historic Ships. These vessels are an important part of Britain’s maritime past and National Historic Ships works to ensure that the most significant vessels are preserved for future generations.
Over 500 years ago, map-maker and explorer John Cabot set sail from Bristol in the Matthew hoping to reach Asia by travelling west.
In 1805 Pickle was chosen to deliver one of the most legendary dispatches in naval history: the news of victory at Trafalgar and of Nelson’s death.
Pilot cutter Cariad was built in 1904 for Cardiff pilot Thomas Richards. Her name means ‘loved one’ in Welsh.
Reaper was one of the largest Fifie herring drifters. She was crewed by eight men and a boy, and used drift nets up to one and a half miles long.
The 1944 Normandy landings were a complex operation, and a well-assembled fleet of mixed landing craft were key to the Allied success.