Efforts to save Royal Navy's 'last of the wooden walls' HMS Bronington 'coming together nicely'

EFFORTS to save a sinking Royal Navy warship once captained by Prince Charles are ‘coming together nicely’ as stakeholders looking into saving the ship step up with help.

By Steve Deeks
Tuesday, 26th April 2022, 4:55 am
Updated Tuesday, 26th April 2022, 11:44 am

Supporters battling to save HMS Bronington, a Cold War-era minesweeper and one of the last naval ships to feature a wooden hull, have been praised.

Despite her past glories and service to the country in helping maintain peace during the turbulent Cold War, Bronington had looked set for the scrapyard after being submerged at Birkenhead Docks, Merseyside.

But the recently-formed Bronington Trust, set up to save the former war ship, has so far raised more than £6,000.

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HMS Bronington March 2022. Pic Mike McBride

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Martin Slater, of the trust who is organising the fundraiser, said a recent meeting between those involved in trying to save Bronington was ‘successful’ with pledges put forward.

He said the purpose of the meeting was so environmental management firm Ambipar representatives could have a ‘close-up look at the project and see what they could offer the trust’.

Mr Slater said: ‘On conclusion of the meeting they confirmed, that following a successful dive survey, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) will provide pumping equipment, fenders and ancillary salvage kit for use in the salvage, which would be provided free of charge.

‘Also, a small team will be provided to operate the equipment during the salvage operation. There is also the possibility of them providing a 350 tonne capacity crane, although this has to be confirmed.’

Ambipar will also provide Cammell Laird shipbuilders assurances for any disposal costs should Bronington fail during the first or second phase of the operation.

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Mr Slater added: ‘As you will see from this and previous updates, things are coming together very successfully, with many of those involved giving their services free of charge.

‘That, of course, does not mean to say we don’t need more money – we do as the overall cost of restoration will run into the millions, so please share our appeal far and wide to help us achieve our goal.

‘Thank you once again for your help, it is very much appreciated.’