Sole surviving Second World War coastal motor launch saved for nation

CMB331 saved for the nation by The National Museum of the Royal Navy

Over 150 people have supported a crowdfunding campaign to save a sole surviving coastal motor boat from the Second World War.

The National Museum of the Royal Navy had just three weeks to secure £6000 to transport the 55-foot coastal motor boat CMB 331 to Gosport where she will be housed next to Explosion Museum of Naval Firepower and conserved by a team of experts. 

The campaign got a welcome boost from BAE Systems who donated an additional £1000 just as it closed this week.

David Mitchard, BAE Systems Managing Director, said: “Preserving the heritage of our armed forces is an important part of BAE Systems’ investment in the community, and we are delighted to provide the final sponsorship that will help save the CMB 331 motor boat for generations to come. The National Museum of the Royal Navy plays an important role in protecting this heritage, and the great reception this fundraising campaign received from the public shows how important the Royal Navy’s historical roots are to our local community.”

Donations were received from as far as the United States towards the campaign, which had already received £3000 from an anonymous donor.

Director General of the National Museum Professor Dominic Tweddle said: “We have been overwhelmed by the response to the campaign to save this plucky survivor. These boats were everyday heroes in the Second World War and it’s astonishing so few remain. We are delighted that this campaign has succeeded and look forward to welcoming CMB 331 back to Gosport.”

HMS Hermes returning from the Falklands