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Ship restoration project launched at Buckler's Hard
IT is the Hampshire village where Britain’s finest warships were built in the 18th century.
Now Buckler’s Hard on the Beaulieu River has been chosen for a new shipwrights’ workshop where students will learn the art of restoring historic vessels.
Portsmouth Naval Base Prop-erty Trust (PNBPT) has received a vital grant for the project from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
The trust has been awarded a total of £3.8m. Most of the cash will be spent in Portsmouth but some will be used to fund bursaries for students wishing to join the workshop scheme.
Mary Montagu-Scott, daughter of Lord Montagu of Beaulieu and director of Buckler’s Hard, said: “We are very excited to be working with PNBPT on this project.
“Our long held wish to revive traditional shipbuilding training at Buckler’s Hard, on the very site where Admiral Nelson’s favourite ship Agamemnon was built, is now close to fruition.”
The scheme involves a replica 18th century shipwrights’ workshop at the bottom of the village street, near a set of slipways and close to an existing display of timber workings.
The timber-framed building will be used as a base for the project, to be run in partnership with an international boat-building training college known as IBTC Portsmouth. The first students are due to arrive in April 2015.
A Beaulieu Estate spokesman said: “The training provided will help to ensure the continuation of much-needed skills at both local and national level for the restoration of historic ships.
“The proximity of woodland will present an important opportunity to teach arboriculture techniques and theory, and allow students to learn about the felling, conversion and storage of timber.
“The first stage of this project will be to construct the workshop using local timber. This will be a learning exercise in its own right, with students using traditional tools and methods.”
The spokesman said visitors to Buckler’s Hard would be encouraged to visit the workshop “to gain a better understanding of the industry which gave the village a place in British naval history.”
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