Tudor ship to be sunk at Stoney Cove
Stanegarth to be joined by timbers dating from reign of Elizabeth I
A new attraction is to be sunk at Stoney Cove next week, albeit one a little older than usual.
The so-called ‘Gresham Ship’ was plying the seas during the reign of Elizabeth 1st, around 1570.
What is left of it today was first uncovered in 2003 in the River Thames by the Port of London Authority.
divers will be able to see it for themselves
Back then a team of maritime archaeologists excavated the site, finding forty iron and lead bars, an anchor, Spanish olive jars, and even some organic items including leather shoes, barrel staves and rope.
Two cannons were also found, one of which bore the insignia ‘TG’ and a grasshopper motif. This is presumed to represent Thomas Gresham (1519-1579), who was a famous Elizabethan financier and founder of the Royal Exchange.
Raised pieces of the Gresham Ship and its anchor were then placed in Horsea Lake near Portsmouth for safekeeping.
What does this have to do with Stoney Cove, the former quarry that houses a sunken tugboat, helicopter and all the rest, I hear you say?
Well, Horsea Island is no longer open to the public, and archaeologists have become frustrated by the lack of access.
So next week the five sections of Tudor ship will be raised once again, this time for transportation to the Leicestershire inland diving centre.
The Gresham Ship will be delicately placed at Stoney in a special area at a depth of 6m. Visiting divers will be able to read about the Tudor vessel, before seeing it for themselves.
M1 by Field Squadron, (Air Support), of 39 Engineer Regiment based at Waterbeach Barracks in Cambridge is responsible for moving the timbers and artefacts, with the Gresham Ship due to be re-housed by June 1st.
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