200-year-old replica of gun ship The Severn to go on public display
BERKELEY Castle is crammed full of history – and this 200-year-old scale model of gun ship The Severn proves it.
The historic replica is set to go on public display after being found locked in a cupboard there.
The model of the Bristol-built vessel has how been formally identified and will go on show next month.
It was built as a model for ship builders to use in the dockyard to check dimensions for the full-sized ship. The Severn was launched in Bristol in April 1786.
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The inscription on the painted frieze around the top of its original case states: "The Severn, a fifth rate of 44 guns built at Bristol and launched in April 1786 under inspection of John Miall of His Majesty's Navy, length of the keel 139-10, breadth moulded 37-10½, burthen in tons 877."
Experts at the National Maritime Museum have assessed the ship and found it to be a genuine, original scale model.
The ship, which was discovered in a locked cupboard in the castle last year, adds to the sizeable collection of maritime paintings and memorabilia held at Berkeley Castle.
Charles Berkeley, of Berkeley Castle, said; "My family has a well-charted history of naval involvement and I am thrilled to be able to share this beautiful instructional piece of history with Berkeley Castle visitors.
"I hope that its obvious craftsmanship is of interest to young and old alike."
The Severn was wrecked at Granville Bay, Jersey, on December 21, 1804. The Berkeley Castle team would be interested to hear from anyone with a known involvement with the ship – either its building in Bristol or its naval history.
Contact the estate team for further details at email@example.com.