Earlier this month, I visited HMS Warrior – one of the fascinating exhibits in Portsmouth’s Historic Naval Dockyard, learnt a lot of interesting facts (did you know that the principles of rifling were discovered and first used by medieval archers?) and took loads of pics – some quite artistic.
When she was launched in 1860, Warrior was technologically state-of-the-art iron-clad and steam powered, although still carrying a fully complement of sails – the Hyundai of her day.
The strange thing is that, below deck, she still looks and feels like the Victory. More spacious and certainly more headroom – even baths and washing machines – but the basic layout and functionality is the same. The gun decks, where sailors still ate and slept; the carpenter’s workshop and the on-board smithy; the rows of cutlasses and muskets would be familiar to Nelson’s crew.
It’s only when you reach the Stygian depths of the ship with it s engines, coal stores and greedy boilers that you find yourself unambiguously in the age of steam.
More pics on Flickr: HMS Warrior