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Last Updated: Tuesday, 28 March 2006, 19:37 GMT 20:37 UK
Mary Rose museum plans unveiled
Artist's impression of the new Mary Rose Museum
The new museum is set to open in Portsmouth in 2011
Plans for a 23m purpose-built museum to house Henry VIII's flagship Mary Rose have been unveiled.

The main part of her hull was raised from the bottom of the Solent, off Portsmouth, Hampshire, in 1982.

The new museum, at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, will house the ship as well as some of the 19,000 artefacts found during other dives on the wreck.

Work is set to start in 2008 with the museum due to open in 2011 - 500 years after the Mary Rose's maiden voyage.

The new museum, a wooden-clad, oval building, will cover the dry dock in which the Mary Rose is currently being preserved alongside HMS Victory. It will also have three levels of galleries to tell the story of the ship and explain how she was built.

Mary Rose
The main section of the Mary Rose was raised in 1982

Visitors will also be able to get close to the 500-year-old vessel with no barriers in front of her timbers.

The Prince of Wales, who is the president of the Mary Rose Trust and dived on the wreck site more than 30 years ago, said: "The time has come to reunite the ship with its incredible collection of artefacts in one building.

"This museum, with its much improved educational facilities and its new displays, will enhance hugely the visitor experience and will safeguard the Mary Rose for future generations to enjoy."

More than seven million visitors have already seen the Mary Rose and the ship still attracts about 600,000 visitors each year.

The project is expected to cost about 23m.

The Mary Rose Trust is hoping to raise 10m through campaigning and a request has been put to the Heritage Lottery Fund for the remaining 13m.

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