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- Begun: Sep 2006
- Completed: Mar 2012
- Floor area: 6,150m2
- Sector: Arts and culture
- Total cost: £50M
- Address: Cutty Sark Clipper Ship, King William Walk, Greenwich, London, SE10 9HT, United Kingdom
Conservation and restoration of a tea clipper, which has been raised to create an enclosed event space under the ship
The ship is raised and propped up at its edges by 26 steel struts to create a 1,000 square metre event space below it on the dry dock’s floor. The space is enclosed by a glass canopy, attached along the ship's waterline, that creates a protected air-conditioned space in the dry berth.
In addition the main point of entry to the ship has been relocated, circulation rationalised, offices and workshops removed to return the ship to its original, cargo carrying form, a new staircase added, a 1950s staircase replaced with a platform lift and an additional lift and stair access and other facilities provided in a new three-storey block adjacent to the ship.
The restoration has removed the salt that had corroded the iron structure, which has been coated in specialist protective paint, installed steel replacement ribs, reinstated the keel and restored the weather deck, Muntz metal protective hull cladding and the rigging – all 11 miles of it – to their original specification.
As far as possible, the architect avoided touching the original fabric of the ship, locating vertical circulation in existing openings. About 90 per cent of the original hull construction was retained and everything done is reversible.