Queen reopens Cutty Sark
The famous British tea clipper Cutty Sark will once again open to the public this Thursday, after years of restoration work to repair damage from a fire in 2007. The Queen will perform
an official reopening ceremony on Wednesday.
Located in Greenwich, London, the ship has been a longtime favourite for Londoners. The Cutty Sark went on its maiden voyage in 1870 and is the last surviving tea clipper in existence, a reminder of a time when sailing ships brought tea to London from China.
However steam-powered boats, which passed through the Suez Canal soon took over that route. As a result the Cutty Sark was transferred to the Australian wool route. During that route, it broke the speed record for that run and became one of the most famous ships on the high seas.
However as steam ships became increasingly common, the Cutty Sark became more outdated, and was relegated to lesser runs for poorer shipping companies. However its fortunes began to change and in 1922, the ship was saved from a sad fate when it was bought by an admirer and lovingly restored to its former glory. It opened to the public in 1957.
In recent times, a fire broke out in 2007 while it was being refurbished. Its decks were burnt through. However, much of the ship's fittings and contents had been moved away while work was being done, saving many precious items. Now after a long restoration, the official and final reopening will bring back to life again the story of this remarkable vessel again.