Great Britain: A Preservation Success - Oceanliners and Classic Cruise Ships Magazine

Great Britain: A Preservation Success

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On 5 July 1970 Great Britain (1845), the world’s oldest surviving ocean liner, was brought back from the Falklands to Bristol, England, in the hope of restoring her to her former glory.

Great Britain (1845) returning home.

Great Britain (1845) returning home.

Approximately 100,000 people stood on the banks of the River Avon that day to view a dark,  rusting hulk under tow. Great Britain had returned home. If you think United States is currently in bad shape, you should consider the task that faced Great Britain’s conservers and restorers. She was, quite literally, a wreck.

The brainchild of Victorian master engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel, Great Britain was launched by Prince Albert in 1843 to provide luxury travel to between England and the US. The vessel set new standards in engineering, reliability and speed and was the world’s first large iron ship to be driven solely by a screw propeller.

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