The Mary Rose not in danger of collapsing, says museum

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THE Mary Rose is not in danger of collapsing but is in need of a new support system, it has been revealed.

Following a report from The Daily Telegraph that Henry VIII's iconic ship was beginning to collapse onto itself, the Mary Rose Museum have moved to reassure the public that the vessel remains secure.

The Mary Rose is not collapsing, its official museum has said.

The Mary Rose is not collapsing, its official museum has said.

The report quoted the ship's conservation manager, Dr Eleanor Schofield, who was speaking at an event in London as stating that the ship's hull had started to 'come down on itself' and said in the headline that the wreck was collapsing.

Dr Schofield's quotes read: 'The ship is now mostly dry. However, although we have put enough of the polymer in so there that there is some stability that is not to say that there is not going to be any change or any movement.

'We only have one half of the hull so the deck beams are not attached to anything on the other side. If you look very closely you will see there is scaffolding in places that we have had to install because there has this movement.

'We've also had various laser scans done on the hull and we are using those to understand the movement. We have a cross section of the hull and you can see through the years the hull has started to come down on itself and the deck beam has twisted since we are not spraying anymore.'

While the museum states that the quotes from Dr Schofield were correct, it disparaged the headline as 'wholly inaccurate'.

The 500-year-old ship was raised from the Solent 35 years ago and has been undergoing extensive conservation ever since through the Mary Rose Trust.

It was first sprayed with chilled water and then sprayed over a 19-year period with a chemical wax to stabilise her timber cells ahead of drying her off - which took place in 2013.

The statement said that the shrinking of the timber was to be expected and that the museum was using laser scans to identify where the ship requires more support.

It read: 'As with any type of wet wood, the Mary Rose's timbers have shrunk as she has dried and this has led inevitably to some cracks appearing on individual timbers and some timbers twisting away from their original beams.

'This is entirely to be expected and the conversation team have added extra scaffold props during the drying process to support the decks of the 500-year-old ship.

'Now that the drying process is largely complete, we are examining the movement of the ship and will be using laser scans to identify where the ship requires more support, with the eventual aim of installing a new support system for the decks of the Mary Rose.'

The Mary Rose was the pride of Henry VIII's battle fleet and was sunk during the Third French War on July 19, 1545.

Her remains were discovered on the seabed in 1971 and she now lies in the museum within Portsmouth Historic Dockyard.