TICKETS NOW AVAILABLE TO THE WORLD’S MOST ADVANCED FLOATING MUSEUM

Caption: (l-r) Jamie Wilson, general manager of HMS Caroline and Mary Jo McCanny of Visit Belfast mark the launch of the first tickets to board the ship
 
Tickets to board HMS Caroline, one of the world’s most advanced floating museums, are now available at Visit Belfast on Donegall Square North in the city. Prices range from £26 for a family ticket to £3.50 per pupil for school groups. Thousands of visitors are expected on board the ship in the coming months to experience a unique journey back to a century ago and a life at sea during World War One. The light cruiser saw action in the infamous Battle of Jutland on May 31 1916 and will be the focus of international commemorations of the battle on May 31 this year. 
 
HMS Caroline which is moored in Belfast’s Alexandra Dock beside the Science Park opens to the public on June 1 the day after the commemorative event marking the centenary of the Battle of Jutland when the ship took part in the last great naval battle ever fought.
The 122-metre long ship has been in Belfast since 1924. It has been restored and fitted out with exhibition areas and exciting interactive suites to highlight the role of 10,000 Irish men who joined the Royal Navy during World War One. It will also provide the visitor with a stark sense of what it was like to be in the middle of a naval battle against the mightiest floating army in the world, the German Imperial Fleet.
Restoration and exhibition fit-out was supported by the award of a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of £11.5m and a further investment by Northern Ireland’s Department for Enterprise Trade and Investment.
 
National Museum of the Royal Navy Chief of Staff Captain John Rees OBE has been leading the complex funding and restoration project.  
 
“HMS Caroline is a living legend. This is a world class heritage asset and the only ship remaining from the Grand and High Seas Fleet of some 250 vessels,” says Captain Rees. “We must not underestimate the value of this ship and the resonance of its history and position in Northern Ireland, so it is a matter of pride for us as well as a contribution to local communities that the ship is brought back to life as a museum, visitor and community centre.” 
 
Paul Mullan, Head of the Heritage Lottery Fund NI, added: "HMS Caroline is unique amongst the world's historic vessels. We are proud that National Lottery players are helping to create a world class attraction that will undoubtedly add to the wealth of HLF supported heritage attractions on offer in Titanic Quarter.  
 
NMRN in a joint venture with Northern Ireland’s Department for Enterprise, Trade and Investment initially secured £1m from the National Heritage Memorial Fund to safeguard the ship, £11.5m from the Heritage Lottery Fund and £2.7m from the Northern Ireland Government to complete the restoration, preservation and interpretative work.
 

Project Phasing

 

The project is split into three distinct phases as outlined below:

PHASE 1 - The Ship: These works comprise of asbestos removal, ship adaptation, audio visual hardware and software and exhibition fit-out and interpretation fit-out.

PHASE 2 - Dry Docking: of the ship for conservation works to the hull

PHASE 3 - Visitor Centre & Landscaping: refurbishment works to the Pump House blocks 1-3 including the Alexandra dock

 

Schedule of opening.

May 31 2016:          
Commemoration of The Irish Sailor. Centenary of Battle of Jutland ceremonies and events at Alexandra Dock.

June 1 2016:           
HMS Caroline welcomes its first public visitors at 1000 hours.

Feb 2017:               
Landscaping of Alexandra Dock complete.

November 2017:    
HMS Caroline leaves Alexandra Dock for dry dock inspection and hull conservation works.

Jan 2017:               
HMS Caroline returns to Alexandra Dock and new position close to Pump House and facing out to sea.

May 2017:               
Completion of Pump House restoration and installation of permanent ticketing office and visitor welcome centre.

 

 

HMS Caroline

Class and type:

C-class light cruiser

Displacement:

·Nominal: 3,750 tons

·Loaded: 4,219 tons

·Deep: 4,733 tons

Length:

420 ft (128.0 m) (446 ft (135.9 m) overall)

Beam:

41.5 ft (12.6 m)

Draught:

16 ft (5 m) maximum

Propulsion:

·4 shaft Parsons turbines

·Power: 40,000 shp

Speed:

28.5 knots (53 km/h)

Range:

carried 405 tons (772 tons maximum) of fuel oil

Complement:

325

Armament:

·As built:

·2 × BL 6 in (152 mm) /45 Mk XII guns (2 × 1),

·8 × QF 4 in (102 mm) /45 Mk V guns[1]

·1 × 6 pounder,

·4 × 21 in (533 mm) torpedo tubes

·Later:

·4 × 6 in (152 mm) /45 Mk XII

·2 × 3 in (76 mm) anti-aircraft

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

HMS Caroline 1916