Tuesday 21 January 2014

In Deep Water - Visit to the Submarine Museum

One of our students; Radim recently went to visit the Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport.  This is his account of the trip:

With my teacher Michael B, I visited the Royal Navy Submarine Museum in Gosport. We took the Gosport ferry across the harbour [from next to Portsmouth harbour rail station at The Hard.] We chose to take a taxi to the museum to save time. [It takes about 15-20 minutes to walk there]

The museum itself has many buildings, so we started at the Weapons Gallery. We saw many torpedoes and missiles. Some torpedoes are over 100 years old!

Then we walked to the information and shop (the main entrance & ticket office). We first saw a 4-man mini/midget submarine from WW2 [HMS 24X]. It looked too small for 4 people! Very interesting to see how sailors could live in so little a space!

We saw the oldest submarine – a wooden replica from USA – the Turtle, built in 1775. Very surprising to see a small one-person submarine!

In this main building there were many interesting things. My teacher loved the periscopes and we ‘played’ who can first find LSI building. We saw many things and displays from the American, German, Soviet and British (of course!) submarines. I liked finding out how sailors lived inside – the small beds, the small personal space.

It was fascinating to see the old submarine made from plate metal ( Holland 1 from 1901). It was exciting to go inside and see the machinery – the engines, the torpedo tubes – and to touch the metal. I was almost back in time!

Unfortunately we had no time to visit the big submarine (HMS Alliance) from 1945 that is outside in a dry dock. We had no time as you needed to be part of a guided tour that took 45 minutes. It would be good to go back just for this.

We walked back along the waterfront with the marina and all the sailing boats - big, small, some looked very expensive.

We saw the Time space sundial – a big concrete sun clock; and information about the history of Gosport.

It was very interesting to stand on the Millennium Pier out into the harbour and see Portsmouth from this angle – completely different, almost completely unrecognisable!

What I enjoyed the most: going inside Holland 1 the old metal submarine from 1901.

Radim Sevcik

How to get there

Ferry from Portsea – pontoon next to Portsmouth Harbour Station.
The Gosport ferry (green ferry) costs £2.90 for a return ticket.
Either take a taxi to Haslar Road/submarine museum
Or walk along seafront pas
Haslar Marina, over the bridge to Haslar and the Museum.
Price : £12.50 adult; £9 with a student card.
Need a good 3 hours to see everything!

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