HMS Caroline six months from completion

There are just six months left until HMS Caroline is restored and opened to the public in time for the centenary of the Battle of Jutland. 

Support from the Heritage Lottery Fund and Department of Enterprise Trade and Investment (DETI) has helped to restore the famous ship which will be turned into a museum and meeting and conference venue. 

Based at the Alexandra Dock in Belfast, the vessel will open in June 2016 followed later by the restoration of the nearby pump house.

National Museum of the Royal Navy Chief of Staff, Captain John Rees OBE, spoke about the process so far.

'HMS Caroline is a living legend. We are breathing new life into what is an internationally significant piece of world histor,' he said.

'We are particularly looking forward to the ship being ready for public opening on June 1 2016. This will mark the first stage of a series of phased openings. 

'The second and third phases will see the ship dry docked for hull conservation works in the winter and then the completion of onshore facilities.'

Paul Mullan, head of the Heritage Lottery Fund NI, said: 'HMS Caroline is unique amongst the world's historic vessels.'

'We are proud that National Lottery players are helping to create a world class attraction that will undoubtedly add to the wealth of HLF supported heritage attractions on offer in Titanic Quarter. 

'The centenary of the Battle of Jutland is one of many key anniversaries taking place in the coming years.  HLF is working with communities to commemorate, celebrate and explore these events as part of the Decade of Anniversaries and through our dedicated First World War: Then and Now grant programme.'