CHARITY leaders are celebrating after generous donors pulled together to find the final £35,000 needed to complete a new museum for the Mary Rose.
It comes barely two weeks after the Mary Rose Trust launched an appeal to find the last 0.1 per cent of cash it needed to reach its £35m target.
As reported in The News, the Mary Rose Trust launched its final push for the project, based at Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard, on January 30.
Since then, more than 150 people have donated to the cause, raising a total of £35,602 and pushing the trust over the finish line.
Now trust leaders are thanking people for their generosity.
Robert Lapraik, the deputy chief executive of the Mary Rose Trust, said: ‘More than 150 people put their hands into their pockets and donated and we want to say a great thanks to them.
‘I wasn’t expecting us to close that last gap so quickly.
‘We have had to make sure that not only does everything come in on budget but that we also raise the full £35m and it’s great we have been able to do that.
‘And it’s a great credit to Warings, our contractors.’
Workers are currently putting the finishing touches on the insides of the museum, including putting artefacts in their cases.
The museum will open to dockyard workers to test out the visitor experience before it opens to the public later this year.
The final fundraising appeal hinged on getting people to donate as little as £1 towards the last slice of funding.
But within days private sponsors came forward and donated thousands towards the cause.
The trust says the new museum is the most significant development to take place in the Historic Dockyard for years.
It will be the first time people can see the hull of the historic ship with its preserving sprays switched off.
And many of her artefacts will go on display for the first time in the sleek new building, which will open in time to mark 30 years since the Mary Rose was raised.