Help restore HMS Bronington
GIVE A TON FOR A TON ... £100
HMS BRONINGTON, the former Royal Navy minesweeper once commanded by His Majesty the King, desperately needs help.
Except for HMS Victory (launched 7 May 1765), HMS BRONINGTON is the UK's last surviving wooden-hulled vessel to be constructed (built as HMS Humber in 1953 at Beverley, East Yorkshire). She was commanded by His Majesty the King in 1976 while attached to the 1st Mine Counter Measures Squadron (MCM1) based at Rosyth. Her final base port was Portsmouth, where she was based at HMS VERNON (now Gunwharf Quays), followed by HMNB Portsmouth (MCM2 Squadron) until she was decommissioned in 1988. She was converted to a minehunter during a refit at Rosyth Royal Dockyard (1963 – 1965); alterations included the fitting of an enclosed bridge, a tripod mast and the latest Type 193 mine hunting SONAR.
HMS BRONINGTON is registered on the National Historic Ships UK (NHS UK) database (Certificate Number 130). NHS UK is the official voice for our historic vessels and contains a significant sub-group of around 200 elite vessels (including HMS BRONINGTON) deemed by NHS UK to be of "exceptional historical interest". (visit the NHSUK website for further information).
She is deemed worthy of being part of the NHF due to:
* Being of pre-eminent national or regional significance
* Spanning the spectrum of UK maritime history
* Illustrating changes in construction and technology
* Meriting a higher priority for long-term conservation
Sadly, membership of the NHF will not prevent HMS BRONINGTON from being scrapped as she is privately owned, hence our efforts to save her.
Since the voluntary liquidation of the Warship Preservation Trust in 2006, Bronington sits abandoned and neglected in the Birkenhead dock system. Then, overnight on 18th/19th March 2016, Bronington sank at her moorings in Gilbrook Basin and now sits up to her gunwales on the silty bottom, listing to starboard.
HMS Bronington Preservation Trust Ltd. has been formed to explore the possibility of re-floating and restoring her. However, this will take time, and ultimately a lot of money will be required.
Firstly, a dive survey by a professional company is required to assess the hull's state and whether any significant damage may result in the project having to be abandoned. For this, we are hoping to raise £20,000 which will cover the costs of the survey, subsequent re-floating and pumping out.
Following this, the Trust will be actively seeking sponsorship and grants to fund the remaining phases of the restoration, i.e. removal to a repair facility and full restoration to her former glory.
The Trustees are asking for your help with this phase by asking you to donate to the initial costs required to get this project off the ground. Any donation, large or small, will be gratefully received.
Should the project be abandoned, all donations, less necessary expenses, will be further donated to Forces charities.
Further details can be obtained by contacting either:
Peter Horscroft [email redacted] or
Martin Slater [email redacted]
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