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Last Updated: Friday, 24 November 2006, 13:31 GMT
Dockyard stores tea clipper masts
The Cutty Sark,  Cutty Sark Trust
The Cutty Sark is the world's oldest surviving tea clipper
Masts from the Cutty Sark have begun arriving at Chatham Historic Dockyard where they are to be stored for two years while the ship is restored.

The 100ft-long masts, which each weigh 13 tonnes, are being delivered in three loads on Friday, Monday and Tuesday.

Visitors to the Kent dockyard will be able to see the masts, which will be stored between historic ships HM Submarine Ocelot and HMS Gannet.

The ship's spars, which began arriving this week, will also be at Chatham.

Conservation project

"We welcome Cutty Sark and look forward to showing her masts and spars off to all our visitors in 2007," said Bill Ferris, chief executive of Chatham Historic Dockyard Trust.

The 137-year-old tea clipper, in dry dock at Greenwich, south-east London, is being restored as part of a 25m conservation project.

The makeover will include the building of a catering and educational centre under the hull.

The project is being funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, although the Cutty Sark Trust said it still had to raise another 6m.


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