OWNERS of a D-Day vessel have launched a new attempt to prevent her being scrapped in the years leading up to her centenary.

They have revealed plans to secure the future of the former HMS Calshot by turning her into a tribute to the ill-fated Titanic.

The liner was on her maiden voyage from Southampton to New York when she hit an iceberg and sank with the loss of 1,500 lives.

On April 12 2012 Calshot commemorated the 100th anniversary of Titanic's departure by re-enacting the start of her journey. Her huge boiler is said to be identical to those aboard the luxury White Star vessel.

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As reported in the Daily Echo, the former tug is in a poor state of repair and needs to be taken out of the water.

Now members of the Tug Tender Calshot Trust have marked her 90th birthday by identifying a potential new home for the vessel - a derelict area near Southampton's Royal Pier where she could become a land-based attraction.

They have also launched a search for suitable business partners who could turn their dream into a reality.

A previous proposal to save Calshot by transferring her from her berth in Southampton docks to Mayflower Park failed to make any real headway.

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The vessel was launched in 1929 and helped manoeuvre the world’s greatest ocean liners before being renamed HMS Calshot ahead of the D-Day landings on June 6 1944.

She transported sections of the famous Mulberry harbours to France and also served as a “non-assault HQ ship”.

But the former Red Funnel vessel is slowly deteriorating and needs to moved ashore.

A trust spokesman said: "The Visit Southampton website says 'Southampton is widely recognised as the cruise capital of Europe and welcomes more than two million passengers to the city each year'.

"These passengers often have family or friends who would welcome the opportunity of visiting Calshot - The Titanic Tribute Ship.

"Southampton is a world-famous port and should have a 'real' historic ship as an additional tourist attraction."

The trust is planning to create a Red Funnel lounge and bar which will include a exhibition of photographs showing Calshot manoeuvring the famous ocean-going liners that sailed from Southampton.

The spokesman said: "Calshot will be 100 in ten years' time. We're seeking business partners who will support our aim of saving her for future generations."