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Wednesday, 30 October, 2002, 13:15 GMT
Last clipper may head home
City of Adelaide
The City of Adelaide transported families to Australia
A ship built on the River Wear could be returning the north-east of England after almost 140 years.

The City of Adelaide was built in 1864 by a Sunderland shipyard.

The vessel is the oldest surviving clipper in the world - the only other is the Cutty Sark.

Now it is hoped the ship, which is derelict at a berth in Scotland, may return to Wearside as a floating museum.

City of Adelaide
The City of Adelaide today at a berth in Scotland

Sunderland City Council has commissioned a 25,000 study to see if the 176-feet long former passenger and cargo sailing ship can be brought home.

Alec Renwick, chairman of Sunderland Maritime Heritage, said: "We need to bring this ship back to Sunderland and do the restoration work on her.

"We are very pleased that a study is under way into her possible future.

"We have worked closely with Sunderland City Council to see what the costs might be and what it will mean for the city."

Rising costs

The City of Adelaide, later renamed The Carrick, made 23 voyages to South Australia transporting families from Britain and Ireland to the colony.

After serving as a passenger ship, cargo vessel and Royal Navy training clipper, she was eventually sold to the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve on the River Clyde in Scotland.

Sunderland-based historian Stuart Miller said: "The vessel was quite spectacular when she was launched all those years ago.

"She could play a very significant role as a tourist attraction for the city in a redeveloped quayside area.

"It would be a great shame if the ship was lost."

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 ON THIS STORY
Alec Renwick, Sunderland Maritime Heritage
"This would be an important tourist attraction for Sunderland"
See also:

03 Oct 02 | Wales
08 Aug 01 | Scotland
23 Aug 02 | Wales
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