Heritage and exhibition specialists at Focus Consultants are
preparing for the opening of the Royal Navy’s only Gallipoli surviving craft following
a major restoration of the First World War warship.
On 6th August, The National Museum of the Royal Navy (NMRN) will open HMS M.33 to the public for the first
time in her history, following a distinctive and extensive conservation project
funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
Come the centenary of her launch, HMS M.33 will be the only
First World War warship to allow visitors to walk her decks this year.
Nottingham-based Focus Consultants has been a part of the
team involved in the £2.5 million ‘Commemorating Gallipoli – the HMS M.33
Project’, part of the NMRN’s wider ‘Great War At Sea 1914-1918’ programme to
mark the Royal Navy’s First World War.
With the help of Focus as cost consultants, the restoration
project secured almost £1.8 million from the HLF. Focus, which also has
branches in London, Leicester, and in Boston and Aubourn in Lincolnshire, was
also CDM (construction, design and management) coordinator for the scheme.
“This project has brought HMS M.33 back to life and will
enable visitors to go aboard this historic warship for the first time and
explore the stories of those who fought on board,” said Focus Associate Eleanor
Clarke. “The team at Focus Consultants has been proud to have played a part in
the restoration of such an important ship in time for the 100th anniversary of
the Gallipoli campaign she took part in.”
HMS M.33 is positioned in No.1 Dry Dock at Portsmouth
Historic Dockyard, alongside HMS Victory and the Mary Rose Museum. Focus has
been involved in a number of schemes in Portsmouth Historic Dockyard. Working
with Portsmouth Naval Base Property Trust and the International Boatbuilding
Training College, the company is project manager and quantity surveyor on a
development to restore and refurbish Boathouse 4 and create a new £5.5 million
Boatbuilding and Heritage Skills Training Centre.
HMS M.33 is the only surviving Navy ship from the
ill-fated Gallipoli campaign, and as such, holds great historic importance.
This is despite the fact she was constructed and sent into service so speedily
that she did not even warrant a name. Fabricated in just seven weeks she was
one of nearly forty “monitors” built in a rapid construction campaign following
the outbreak of First World War.
Sir Peter Luff, Chair of HLF, said: “The role played at
Gallipoli by the Royal Navy and Monitor Class ships like M33 in protecting
soldiers in the August 1915 landings is an incredible story of perseverance,
endeavour and bravery. It has a personal meaning for me as my father and his
two brothers served in Gallipoli. So I’m particularly grateful that,
thanks to National Lottery players, M33 is now open in the campaign’s
centenary year and people can experience first-hand the conditions in which the
men aboard lived and fought.”
The NMRN commissioned Ian Clark Restoration to conserve the
fabric of the ship.
HMS M.33 launches on 6th August 2015 and welcomes
its first visitors on 7th August.
Focus specialises in creative approaches to securing funding
packages and delivering high quality projects across the UK. Since its creation
in 1994, Focus has helped to secure
more than £953 million of grant assistance for a range of projects and
businesses across the UK and delivered more than £1.1 billion of
projects and programmes.
For more information visit www.focus-consultants.co.uk
Press release issued by Nottingham PR company Perfect 10 PR www.perfect10pr.co.uk