A Lottery Grant Is Keeping The World's First Armored Battleship Afloat

The gun deck of the HMS Warrior has been fully restored.

I visited the HMS Warrior on a trip to England a few years back, and it was a fascinating experience to see the first iron-hulled battleship ever built. The ship was built in 1860 and is still watertight, but needs urgent repairs.

The HMS Warrior at Portsmith where she is docked permanently.

The UK National Lottery fronted with £2.6 million (US$3.8M) from their Heritage Lottery Fund to help fix the floating museum, and to improve the visitor experience.

The historic ship is docked at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard and is visited by 260,000 people each year.

Traveling in style - the captain's cabin in the 155-year-old vessel.

Carol SouterCarole Souter, chief executive of the Heritage Lottery Fund, said: ''When she was built, HMS Warrior was at the forefront of marine technology, a symbol of the UK's immense naval prowess."

"This Lottery grant will ensure she is safeguarded for future generations to explore and will give today's visitors the opportunity to better understand her role in our rich naval heritage.''

The preservation works is expected to take two years.

It will include repairs to the bulwarks and water bar between the deck and the iron hull which are deteriorating, putting the ship 'at significant risk.'

And the ship is giving a former Navy man a rare privilege as this comment shows: