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The Cutty Sark is a clipper ship. Built on the Clyde in 1869 for the Jock Willis shipping line, she was one of the last tea clippers to be built and one of the fastest, coming at the end of a long period of development which halted as sailing ships gave way to steam propulsion.

The opening of the Suez Canal (also in 1869) meant that steam ships now had a much shorter route to China, so Cutty Sark spent only a few years on the tea trade before turning to the trade in wool from , where she held the record time to for ten years. Improvements in steam technology meant that gradually steamships also came to dominate the longer sailing route to Australia and the ship was sold to the Portuguese company Ferreira and Co. in 1895, and renamed Ferreira. She continued as a cargo ship until purchased by retired sea captain Wilfred Dowman in 1922, who used her as a training ship operating from Falmouth, Cornwall. After his death she was transferred to the Nautical Training College, Greenhithe in 1938 where she became an auxiliary cadet training ship alongside HMS Worcester. By 1954 she had ceased to be useful as a cadet ship and was transferred to permanent dry dock at Greenwich, London on public display.

Cutty Sark is one of three ships in on the Core Collection of the National Historic Ships Register (the nautical equivalent of a Grade 1 Listed Building) – alongside HMS Belfast and SS Robin. She is one of only three remaining original composite construction (wooden hull on an iron frame) clipper ships from the nineteenth century in part or whole, the others being the , awaiting transportation to Australia for preservation, and the beached skeleton of Ambassador of 1869 near Punta Arenas, Chile.

The ship was badly damaged by fire on 21 May 2007 while undergoing conservation. The vessel has been restored and was reopened to the public on 25 April 2012.

Career (UK)
Name:Cutty Sark (1869–95), (1922–present)
Owner:John Willis (4064 share)
Robert Dunbar Willis (2464 share)
Ordered:1 1869
Builder:Scott & Linton
Laid down:1869
Launched:22 November 1869
Sponsored by:Mrs. Moodie
Commissioned:16 February 1870
Out of service:December 1954
Homeport:London (1870–1895)
Falmouth (1923–38)
Identification:UK Official Number: 63557
Motto:“Where there's a will is a way”
Status:Cosmetically restored
Career (Portugal)
Namesake:Joaquim Antunes Ferreira
Owner:Joaquim Antunes Ferreira & Co.
Acquired:22 July 1895
Homeport:Lisbon, Portugal
Nickname:Pequena Camisola (“Little shirt”)
Career (Portugal)
Name:Maria do Amparo
Owner:Companhia Nacional de Navegação
Homeport:, Portugal
General characteristics
Class & type:Clipper
Tonnage:975 GRT
Displacement:2,100 tons (2,133.7 tonnes) at 20 ft (6.1 m) draught
Length:Hull: 212 ft 5 in (64.74 m)
LOA: 280 ft (85.34 m)
Beam:36 ft (10.97 m)
Draught:21 ft
Propulsion:32,000 sq ft sail (3000 hp)
Sail plan:1870: ship rig
1916: barquentine rig
Speed:17.15 kn (31.76 km/h)
Capacity:1,700 tons (1542 tonnes)


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