Donations are helping to bring Great War ship back to life

From left, Staff Sergeant Albie Annan and Corporal Luke Reynolds (170953-1)

‘Training has been tough but we are prepared’

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ORGANISERS have been thrilled with the response to a crowdfunding appeal which is helping to bring a veteran navy ship back to life.

More than £9,200 has so far been raised through online donations to refurbish the First World War gunship M33, which saw action at Gallipoli.

National Museum of the Royal Navy spokeswoman Jacquie Shaw said that although the amount fell short of a symbolic target of £19,150 – a nod to 1915, the year the ship was launched – she was nonetheless happy with the amount.

Ms Shaw said: ‘We’ve really been delighted with the response because this is something new for the museum and we weren’t sure of what reaction we 
would get.

‘This is a little ship with a big history and it has generated a lot of excitement.’

‘I think this project has really captured people’s imagination.’

The restoration of M33 will cost £2.4m, of which £250,000 must be raised by the museum. Teams are now at work restoring the ship and the dry dock in which she sits, next to HMS Victory at the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.

A group of volunteers from Explosion! Museum of Naval Firepower at Gosport has been working to restore her two 6in guns.

Although the crowdfunding programme has ended, people can still donate to the project online at justgiving.com/m33.

M33 will open to the public in August.