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11th October 2021

Two of the city’s treasured ships have moved to a local shipyard to receive a programme of restoration.

Hull’s last remaining sidewinder trawler, the Arctic Corsair moved on Wednesday 6 October by SMS tugs. It took two tugs just over three hours to relocate the trawler down the Humber estuary to its temporary home, whilst works take place.

On 12 October, the Spurn Lightship was moved by Deans Tugs who manoeuvred the ship out of the Hull Marina dock gates and along the Humber estuary to Dunston’s shipyard, on William Wright Dock.

Crowds of people gathered to see the ships move from their current locations and along the River Humber to Dunston’s shipyard, where they will now receive extensive restoration work.

Both ships will be placed in a dry-dock for a full inspection to assess their condition and enable extensive works to take place that will ensure the long-term preservation of both historic vessels.

The restoration work is being undertaken to showcase both the Arctic Corsair and Spurn Lightship as working vessels, to fully appreciate their unique histories and the stories of those who worked on them.

The Arctic Corsair on the Humber
The Spurn Lightship entering the Humber from Hull Marina

Councillor Daren Hale, Leader of Hull City Council, said: “The relocation of both ships signals the start of an exciting journey as work can now get underway to protect their future for generations to come.

“With the support from volunteers and specialists in the field, the work commissioned on the historic ships has been carefully planned, to strike the delicate balance between conservation and restoration.

“The ships must retain the key historical elements to enable visitors make a real emotional connection with them and show them as when they were working, this is vital for a heritage experience.”

Richard Bourne, Managing Director and co-owner of Dunston (Ship Repairs) Limited, said: “This is a significant landmark, and it is fantastic to have the Spurn Lightship and the Arctic Corsair berthed in our local shipyard. We are extremely excited to start the restoration on two of the city’s most recognised ships and it will be a privilege to work on them on behalf of the city.”

The Spurn Lightship is expected to reopen to visitors, near the Murdoch Connection Bridge in spring 2023.

It is anticipated, the brand-new visitor attraction at the historic North End Shipyard and the Arctic Corsair will open in autumn 2023.