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Author Topic: HMS Belfast  (Read 6222 times)

Mr Andy

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Re: HMS Belfast
« Reply #25 on: April 19, 2008, 08:35:41 PM »

I think Britain should be ashamed at the way they treat our maritime history, you only have to look at the Ships Nostalgia site to see what needs saving and what we have lost. The Americans have ships preserved that they feel belong to the state they are named after, imagine if we did the same! no maybe not we know it just will not happen. Then again look at the Dutch the boats they have preserved, someone here should get a good clean swift kick up the jacksy, for showing a complete lack of interest. Rant over for now.

Andy
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farrow

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Re: HMS Belfast
« Reply #26 on: June 09, 2008, 09:45:49 PM »

Bryan, some years ago when the RMAS ST Margarets paid off, Liverpool council did approach the MoD to buy her. They wanted to put her in their dock complex as an attraction as she was built in Birkenhead in 1943, but the MoD insisted she was sold to the highest bidder, which surprise surprise was Pounds of Portsmouth who eventually sold her on for scrap in Italy.
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Bowwave

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Re: HMS Belfast
« Reply #27 on: June 10, 2008, 10:43:02 AM »

Unlike our American cousins we as an erstwhile maritime power have responded lamentably over the years to preserving aspects of our maritime past. Having said all that acquiring a warship is not so much,  the hard part. Raising money for on going care and maintenances certainly is.  In the cold light of day  only organizations like the Imperial War Museum have the infrastructure and funding train in place to ensure preservation projects like warships don't end up on the buffers. Even these organizations have acquisition policies and budget limitations but preserving a warship even  small ones presents huge problems. Docking, and painting are just two, which eat into any budget. I often hear cries of why oh why didn't we preserve this battleship or that carrier but as we have seen recently even the old Plymouth and Broninngton are languishing, not so much for the lack of on going maintenance which was always a problem but there was no tenure of berthing so when the chips were down the ships had to go. Since then no other interested party has come forward to show any firm interest.  To place things in perspective  its not so much  the lack of preservation   , as sad as it is but the demise of our ship building  skills and capacity now that is were the real concerns should be.
Bowwave
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Bartapuss

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Re: HMS Belfast
« Reply #28 on: June 10, 2008, 11:19:09 PM »

I believe its a sign of the times this country is a facing, no longer are thousands of men employed in shipping, shipbuilding and the associated industries that supplied and supported it such as coal mining and steel making. these people and their families understood the importance of being a strong maritime nation. Successive UK governments seem to have gone out of their way to destroy our  manufacturing base in the name of the foreign share holder and now generations people are dumped on the dole and given money to numb the minds with drugs. Yet our armed forces seem to be constantly realing from cutbacks whilst more and more is asked of them with little or no support form government.
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Every time I learn something new, it pushes something old out of my brain - I says wot I likes and I likes wot I say!!!

Colin Bishop

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Re: HMS Belfast
« Reply #29 on: June 11, 2008, 10:18:57 AM »

As soon as a ship is completed she starts to deteriorate and needs constant maintenance to keep it in check. I recently had a cruise on an older ship and the crew were constantly working on her, recaulking the decks, stripping and revarnishing handrails, repainting the superstructure and, in port, repainting the sides of the ship. I think many people asssume that when a ship is taken out of service for preservation all that's needed is a place to park her and the occasional lick of paint to keep her looking shipshape when the truth is very different. This report on the state of HMS Cavalier gives an indication of just some of the problems faced when trying to preserve even a smallish ship: http://www.hmscavalier.org.uk/specs3/index.html
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Bowwave

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Re: HMS Belfast
« Reply #30 on: June 11, 2008, 10:20:10 AM »

Another aspect of funding preserved warships that expose the stark differences of approach and policy that exists between the US and UK is in the strong connections that the USN, and ship associations    have with the vessels being preserved. Also the sense of pride exhibited by the state where the vessel is kept.  Sadly this connection doe's not exist in the UK in any meaningful way. I'm not being unkind here to the various naval associations and volunteers, whos impute is vital and their contribution often understated. But the truth of the matter is in the US   warship association have a more proactive role and because of this can raise substantial sums that go towards the costs of preservation. This approach is well established and ensures that many of the vessels have a future. 
Bowwave
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tobyker

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Re: HMS Belfast
« Reply #31 on: June 11, 2008, 11:13:40 PM »

I was speaking to my godfather today (the last seagoing captain of HMS Belfast) who was instrumental in setting up the original preservation trust. He said they were so relieved when the IWM took her on as the big expense the trust could never raise enough money for was the dry-docking every 5 years.
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