Wednesday 25th November
The Excavation of the Mary Rose
The Mary Rose was the flagship of Henry VIII’s naval fleet; on the 19th July 1545 in a battle with the French Armada just outside Portsmouth Harbour, the Mary Rose sank suddenly with 700 men on board. Apart from a few attempts to explore the wreck in 1800s, it remained untouched for 500 years when in 1979 - 1982 when a team of divers and marine archaeologists from the newly formed Mary Rose Trust embarked on a project to excavate the contents of the ship and bring to the surface the remains of hull of the Mary Rose.
This was successfully achieved in 1982 and the remains of the ship and all its contents are now housed in the Mary Rose Museum in Portsmouth Dockyard. The Mary Rose Project is significant because of its contents; the personal possessions and even the men on board remained intact, preserved in the soft mud of the Solent for 437 years, providing a ‘time capsule’ of life on board a Tudor warship.
Dawn Perrier Baker was a young diver and part of the team involved in this fascinating excavation and is now active in promoting the work of the Mary Rose Trust. Dawn will give her personal experiences of the original dives and excavation work and show some of the artefacts raised and talk about what the Mary Rose Project has taught us about Tudor life.