Vital repairs are to be made to the roof of HMS Unicorn after the team behind the historic ship secured funding.
The tourist attraction, which is berthed in the city’s Victoria Dock, has received some much-needed funding from both Dundee Historic Environment and Fife Environmental Trust to make the vital repairs.
The ship was launched in 1824, making it the third oldest in the world to still be afloat, and is Scotland’s only preserved warship.
It is now a visitor centre, giving people an insight into life on board a 19th century frigate and a look at the history of Dundee’s Navy.
However, long-term exposure to freshwater, such as rainwater, deteriorates the ship’s hill planking if left unchecked.
Previously, the original ship roof was extended to prevent rain from landing on the deck and running down the sides, and offered protection for the first time in decades.
But over time the felt covering on the roof’s extended eaves came away, meaning rainwater can now fall through the roof’s wooden planks and onto the ship.
MacKays, a traditional boat builders from Arbroath, has now been tasked with carrying out repairs to reinstate the roof’s full protective covering.
Catherine Erskine, one of the trustees of the ship, said: “The Unicorn Preservation Society is extremely grateful to Dundee Historic Environment Trust and Fife Environment Trust for grants to enable us to repair the roof of the ship.
“This will enable us to prevent rainwater entering the ship and damaging the timbers.
“This important work is a major step towards the long-term preservation of HMS Unicorn in the East Graving Dock and we are excited to see this much anticipated work commence after February gales and the Covid-19 shutdown prevented work from going ahead.”
The majority of the work will be on HMS Unicorn’s starboard side, where most of the original roofing is missing and where the deterioration is most noticeable.
MacKays believes the work will take around five days to be carried out.
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