SAVE HMS CAROLINE 1914 Light Cruiser


Lantern Swinger
"Can't comment on the £5 million but he has donated to get the campaign started,"

sinbad, where does the "Friends of Caroline" campaign the Lord Mayor, Nigel Dodds MP, and other MLA Unionists believe the £5 million plus is going to come from to restore the old lady back to her original position?

The reason I ask this is because I believe 30 July is the deadline the chairman of the RN Museum has given to the Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster. Apparently up until now no worthwhile proposal has been put forward to keep Caroline in Belfast.
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Dear NAB,With so few ships in our navy now finding a space in Portsmouth may not be so difficult,even allowing for the new carriers.On harbour cruises in the 60s and 70s I saw many ships double-berthed right round to near Whale Island,now the harbour often seems deserted,a sad sight that needs livening up and if increasing our heritage collection with CAROLINE will help then let's go for it.
Seeing the base most days I'm well aware how empty it is. It's more a practicality issue of getting public access to wherever she was berthed from the historic (ie open to public) areas, assuming of course that anyone actually raises enough interest to make it happen.....


Lantern Swinger

5 July 2012

HMS Caroline in Belfast should stay in Belfast - Foster

Tourism Minister, Arlene Foster has met with the Ministry of Defence to discuss options for keeping HMS Caroline in Belfast.

The Minister, accompanied by Nigel Dodds MP and Northern Ireland, Minister of State, Hugo Swire met with Andrew Robathan, Minister for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans in London yesterday.

Arlene Foster said: “This was a positive meeting and we impressed upon Mr Robathan the need to keep HMS Caroline in Belfast. Over the past year I and my officials have been trying to find a solution to this issue working in partnership with the Museum of the Royal Navy. Last summer I asked for an appraisal of options for the ship to be undertaken and this work was completed in January of this year. The report concluded that whilst there were significant funding challenges there were real benefits to restoring the ship here in Belfast.

“HMS Caroline has been berthed in Belfast since 1924 and is an important part of our maritime heritage. In its current location beside Titanic Belfast, the ship offers a unique opportunity to further develop tourism in Titanic Quarter. Already, more than 200,000 people have visited Titanic Belfast since it opened at the end of March. I believe HMS Caroline could play an important role in attracting even more visitors to the area.

“Following the meeting I now intend to write to the Museum of the Royal Navy and hope to meet with them soon to progress this matter.”


Why the obsession with saving costly old hulks? Whack a picture of it in the Imperial War Museum and carve it up.
Save caroline!

Why the obsession with saving costly old hulks? Whack a picture of it in the Imperial War Museum and carve it up.
If people really felt like this there would be no visitors to HMSs VICTORY and WARRIOR in Portsmouth,HMS BELFAST in London, or any other historic ships here or throughout the world.The fact that there are always visitors to these old ships speaks for itself that there is a great deal of interest in them,and Navy Day events are always well attended.In Japan there is the MIKASA,in St Petersburg the AVRORA,which I twice went aboard in recent years,finding it just as fascinating as any of our own.Are you in any way connected with the navy,or do you have an interest,historical or otherwise in it? If so,I find it hard to understand your view.One of the greatest moments for Portsmouth in this connection was the visit of USS IOWA in 1986,which drew fantastic crowds. and made a tremendous impression.Anyone can make a case for better ways to spend money but discarding the past can take so much interest out of our lives.Although it may not be the case these days quite so much,our country owes its existance to the Royal Navy,which for centuries was the only thing to protect our shores.So let's keep our relics as reminders to future generations of where our history and heritage came from.
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Lantern Swinger
[h=1]Last-ditch plea for Caroline to stay in Belfast[/h]

By Michael Powell
Published on Saturday 7 July 2012 05:00

NORTHERN Ireland’s tourism minister has made a last-minute plea to keep HMS Caroline in Belfast – potentially dashing efforts to bring the First World War cruiser to Portsmouth.
Arlene Foster met with MoD officials this week and urged them to keep the warship in Ulster.
The MoD has warned the ‘increasingly fragile’ survivor of the Battle of Jutland will be sold unless it receives a [COLOR=blue !important][FONT=inherit !important][COLOR=blue !important][FONT=inherit !important]heritage[/FONT][/FONT][/COLOR] bid before the end of this month.[/COLOR]
Since 2009, the Portsmouth-based National Museum of the Royal Navy has been in charge of finding a solution for Caroline.
But, as reported in The News, the museum’s director-general Professor Dominic Tweddle has become frustrated with Stormont politicians who, despite talks, have so far failed to table a bid.
Estimates suggest it’ll cost £5m to turn the 98-year-old warship into a tourist attraction, plus an extra £250,000-a-year costs.
It’s hoped, locally, that funding can be secured to bring the ship to Portsmouth [COLOR=blue !important][FONT=inherit !important][COLOR=blue !important][FONT=inherit !important]Historic[/FONT][/FONT][/COLOR] Dockyard as the centrepiece for the city’s First World War centenary commemorations in 2014.[/COLOR]
But it appears Northern Ireland may finally make a bid as the July 31 deadline approaches.
Ms Foster met with defence minister Andrew Robathan in London on Thursday.
She said: ‘This was a positive meeting and we impressed upon Mr Robathan the need to keep HMS Caroline in Belfast.
‘I now intend to write to the museum of the Royal Navy and hope to meet with them soon to progress this matter.’
Sources say it could be ‘too little, too late’ from Ms Foster.
But Captain John Rees, who is project manager for the National Museum of the Royal Navy, said: ‘The National [COLOR=blue !important][FONT=inherit !important][COLOR=blue !important][FONT=inherit !important]Museum[/FONT][/FONT][/COLOR] of the Royal Navy has been approached for a meeting and are happy to talk through any viable proposals for HMS Caroline and we expect the meeting to take place very shortly.’[/COLOR]

Last-ditch plea for Caroline to stay in Belfast - Local - Portsmouth News


Lantern Swinger
Decision on HMS Caroline has been delayed for another month as funding has been found for the same period. ministers are still debating the issue!!
Decision on HMS Caroline has been delayed for another month as funding has been found for the same period. ministers are still debating the issue!!
Hi Sinbad.That's a relief in one way,but material deterioration of CAROLINE's elderly hull isn't going to wait while ministers can't agree.If they talk for too long without agreement there is a risk she may be too far gone to save then the whole thing will become academic.As I said in an email to Dominic Tweddle recently,when it is too late everyone will wring their hands in despair crying " why didn't we do something sooner?" Aside from that,if the question is still where does she go,I say Portsmouth because she is a NAVAL attraction badly needed in the NAVAL Heritage Site,and Portsmouth is the recognized home of the Royal Navy. I'm just as keen on TITANIC history too,but TITANIC is NOT a naval attraction.I appreciate CAROLINE has become part of the scenery for Belfast since 1924 and there would be sadness if she went,but if her survival is the paramount concern,she needs to be where she can be best be maintained and provide the greatest attraction for future generations of warship lovers.
Apologies SPB worded it wrong. After being decommissioned she was under DEMS/DENS and will be handed over to the museum when the funding runs out 1st August. It will then be decided Belfast or Portsmouth.
Decision also appears in Portsmouth's newspaper:

<<...Belfast, to which the ship moved to from Portsmouth in 1924, will now provide a mooring in perpetuity for the much-loved Caroline.>>

HMS Caroline will not be coming to Portsmouth - Defence - Portsmouth News

I have fond memories of Caroline, back in the early 80s, while giving a lecture on IEDs to a group of MN officers, I split my trousers, fore and aft, while lowering an OHP to the deck. An Irish sea-captain, moving with alacrity, offered me his hussif, recently restocked with thread from an hotel in the USA. Switched on the 16mm, sat at the back, stitched my trousers back together in rainbow colours. Mission accomplished!
Hi I worked on the Caroline in the 70,s what a brilliant experience as a young Oem .......I was on Maidstone at that time and was really pleased when asked to go and work on the Caroline if I remember right it was to repair some of the lighting. Even though its in Belfast I feel it would be better served in England as Plymouth or Portsmouth have ideal places for it to be worked on and shown. If it had of gone for scrap I would of loved to have the ships bell for my wife who is Caroline. Thank God it isnt well done to everyone!!!
When i was in teh R.N.X.S. we used to sail from south Wales to Belfast and refuel alongside the Coroline. Our ATO was Lt Cdr Walter Pigeon. Who served as his last RN command on the Caroline He gave us a guided tour of the ship back in late 80 and i have several photos to remind me.
Unfortunately we were not there long enough to see the spirit of the Chief Engineer (or any other spirits)
Or perhaps Bandy is taking the piss, just a thought :)
Hi,I just sent a reply but I don't think it went through,so just in case I'll try again - You're probably right,I could "hear" the sarcasm in his reply. What a shame for him he can't be objective enough to make a sensible reply. I couldn't be bothered to lower myself to respond in kind to remarks that are so wide of the mark.When I see some of the messages on other sites that are either silly or insulting I wonder why people with interests in history can't make the effort to have a serious discussion. I'm on another site which is full of informative subjects where genuine researchers post queries and replies and help each other. I had thought this forum would be similar but I don't think I'll be using it again.I'll keep an open mind though.As for CAROLINE,of course it's disappointing for Portsmouth not to get her but someone had to lose out,at least she is saved from the breakers.

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