News article

Frazer-Nash provides preservation support to HMS Unicorn

Back to all news

In partnership with University of Southampton, work has recently begun to provide critical naval architecture support to the preservation of museum ship HMS Unicorn.

Frazer-Nash and the University of Southampton have recently partnered to provide critical naval architecture support to the preservation of museum ship HMS Unicorn, which is moored in Dundee.

Launched in 1824, and originally constructed as a 46-gun frigate in Chatham, Unicorn served much of its life as a training ship in Dundee harbour. These days, she floats as a museum ship, owned by the Unicorn Preservation Society.

However, after almost 200 years afloat, time and the environment have taken their toll. With structural issues becoming apparent, the Unicorn Preservation Society is starting a programme of much-needed work to understand its current state, so that the ship may remain afloat and intact for future generations.

Frazer-Nash and the University of Southampton are using their naval architecture skills to provide an assessment of the ship's stability. By using CAD drawings and laser scans of the ship, the Marine Technology group, led by Naval Architect Richard Lawrence, will model the hull to estimate the state of the ship's stability. This model will then be used to help the Unicorn Preservation Society with future planning. Frazer-Nash Year-in-Industry student, Jack Durston, who is studying Ship Science at the University of Southampton, is performing the technical work as part of his studies.

Keir Gravil, naval architect and Commercial Marine Business Manager at Frazer-Nash commented:

“This is a really exciting project, and one that we’re proud to work on. As naval architects, we’re always happy to see a ship with such history get the chance to be preserved for posterity. It’s not often you get to work on a ship with a history like that of the Unicorn. We’re also very pleased to have the opportunity to get the next generation of naval architects involved, and assist their studies.”

When the project is complete, it is anticipated that further work will be performed by the students at the University of Southampton to support the Unicorn Preservation Society, which will be overseen by chartered naval architects in Frazer-Nash.

You can find out more about the ship and its history at:

The cross section and bow of HMS Unicorn - courtesy of The Unicorn Preservation Society