Time is fast running out to save historic clipper ship The City of Adelaide from deconstruction. The Scottish Government’s ‘preferred bidder, Australian group, Clipper Ship City of Adelaide Limited (CSCoAL), is seemingly unable to demonstrate that it can provide the ship with a sustainable future, but HS and the SMM appear to be giving every assistance to CSCoAL to remove the ship by a deadline in March 2012.
It seems incredible that this historic ship, of recognised national and international historic value, currently in the collections of a nationally recognised museum, the oldest ship registered by National Historic ships UK as part of the 200-strong National Historic Fleet, and the only ship to enjoy a Category A listed building status in Scotland, is also to be found on the Scottish Buildings at Risk Register. If no reliable new custodian can be found SMM have permission to take it to pieces.
RESCUE: The British Archaeological Trust is concerned that there is a very real danger that this internationally important British heritage asset will be exported to Australia without any assurance that the substantial resources required to preserve it are available and that a change of location will simply duplicate the current unsatisfactory situation. It is not a solution to simply move the ship to another part of the world, where it may well be left to rot, and claim this as a reasonable outcome to an intransigent UK problem.
Please find below copies of our initial letter Fiona Hyslop, Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, the response on her behalf from Historic Scotland, and our follow-up letter to the Scottish Maritime Museum.