Brockweir 12 May 2012
Toby Jones, Director of the Newport Ship project described the finding, excavation, and removal for conservation of timbers of the 100 ft medieval ship of 1460, found just below the castle at Newport. He outlined conservation of the timbers in a series of tanks, which now also serve other archaeological recoveries. With a technique called laser scanning and sintering, a 1:10 exact replica has been built. Toby is organising an international conference on this state of the art technique.
Member Paul Barnett then described the work of the Friends of Purton, now 60 strong, in researching and seeking to preserve the 78 ships at the graveyard at Purton, and put up interpretation material, which the Society has supported. Dale presented a cheque on behalf of the Society in recognition of this tireless work. His project is in some ways a complement to Newport.
After an excellent buffet, Dale Thomas described fifteen sailing ships with Bristol Channel connections, starting with the packet Glamorgan of 1822, and ending with the M A James , last on the mud at Appledore in 1972. The Maria Madre,built in 1875 for Swansea owners as the Langland, trading in S. America when wrecked in 1957 carrying mate tea- the last of the tea clippers ! Other ships included the 4 masted barque Afan Cefri in which his uncle lost his life 1894. He showed an apprentice sea chest from the ship Lucena, which went round the world from Barry to Bristol, to eventually become the last American square rigger in trade.
Finally Colin Green talked about his involvement with the design and build of the Hereford Bull Wye trow replica at Nielsens yard.Thanks are due to the centre for excellent facilities and food
Reported by Dale Thomas
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