Who’s who at Cutty Sark – meet historian and BSL Tour Guide John

Hello, I’m John Wilson and I give BSL talks aboard Cutty Sark. My first tour was on 25th April this year, 2015. So, what are BSL talks? Well, I was born profoundly deaf and so use sign language – British Sign Language or BSL – which is the natural language…

Cutty Sark and the Thames

Cutty Sark was built in 1869 in Scott & Linton’s shipyard in Dumbarton on the banks of the river Leven, a tributary of the Clyde. On leaving the Clyde after her launch, she went on to journey up rivers across the world throughout her working life, but it was the…

Cutty Sark and the era of sail

Cutty Sark is one of the last remaining examples of an extreme clipper– a ship of elegant and beautiful design, with a refined hull shape, raked masts and a huge sail area. She represents the pinnacle of sailing ship design, carrying a remarkable amount of canvas for her size, nearly…

Life on board: the watch system

Life on board for the crew of Cutty Sark was dominated by the watch system. Everyone on board apart from the Master, Steward and the petty officers (carpenter, sailmaker, cook and bosun) were divided into two ‘watches’ – ‘port’ and ‘starboard’ watch. They would then alternate periods of duty, so…

Meet the Greenwich Sea Cadets on board Cutty Sark

Guest blog by the Greenwich Sea Cadets Welcome aboard sailors! Whether at sea or on land, the Sea Cadets offers young people aged 10-18 amazing opportunities for personal development – by learning new skills and working in teams. We offer an environment where young people find new confidence and inspiration….

Who’s who at Cutty Sark? Meet Family Learning freelancer Annie!

By Annie Dickenson I’m Annie, one of a team of Family Learning freelancers on board Cutty Sark. I joined the ship just before it opened back in 2012 to work with the school’s programme and have since migrated across to the Families team. I took the leap from being a…

Who’s who at Cutty Sark? Meet illustrator Nina!

Ahoy there! My name’s Nina and I’m an illustrator. I live in Hastings, East Sussex (right by the sea) and have always had a love for maritime history and stories. I’ve recently been working with Cutty Sark to create an Explorer Trail which kids and families can use to navigate…

Cutty Sark’s cargoes

We know Cutty Sark as a tea clipper but over her working career of 52 years she carried much else besides tea. The ship was built for the China tea trade and on the first three voyages she sailed directly to China, but after this she always sailed first to…

Opening of Cutty Sark by HM The Queen

In the early 1950s, a movement began to find a permanent home for Cutty Sark. The Cutty Sark Preservation Society was established to bring the ship to Greenwich and open her to the public as a memorial to the Merchant Navy and an icon of the bygone era of sail….

The fathers and sons of Cutty Sark

Approaching Father’s Day, we think about the fathers and sons who have played a key part in Cutty Sark’s story: John Willis senior (‘Old Stormalong’) and John ‘White Hat’ Willis Cutty Sark was built for John Willis & Son in 1869 and the company continued to own the ship through…