Standing proud on Greenwich dock, the Cutty Sark is one of London’s principal maritime attractions, the world’s only surviving tea clipper and an iconic landmark of Greenwich pier. One of only three surviving period ships built in its style, the Cutty Sark, designed by Hercules Linton, was constructed in 1869 for the Jock Willis Shipping Line and was one of the fastest tea clippers built on the cusp of the steamship revolution. The 963-ton vessel is now a popular tourist attraction, listed on the National Historic Ship Register and housing a museum that not only tells the story of the ship but allows visitors to explore the ship’s interiors, restored to their former glory. Visitors can explore the cargo holds and living quarters of the merchant seaman; walk the decks and look out to sea from the helm; and delve into the fascinating stories of the ship’s epic voyages.
Despite the tragic fire of 2007 which caused substantial damage to the ship, most of the 280-foot (85-meter) hull remains intact, and the ship has since undergone a massive renovation effort by Grimshaw architects. The newly restored ship and Cutty Sark museum was reopened to the public in 2012 in an official opening ceremony with Her Majesty, The Queen and His Royal Highness, The Duke of Edinburgh in attendance. Today, the ship stands above ground, allowing a full view of her famous shape, and elevators provide easy access to each deck.
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