Project Description

HMS Poictiers was built in 1809 at the yard of John King, at Upnor on the Medway. She was a third rate 74 gun ship and served initially off the French coast during the blockade of Brest. Then as part of Admiral Warren’s fleet during the war of 1812 with America. In 1817 she under went extensive repairs at Chatham dockyard, where she then served as guard ship. In 1848 she was ‘paid off’ as a depot ship (being no longer fit for active service) and was finally broken up in 1857. The figurehead was then placed as a shore exhibit at the Sheerness dockyard. Over the course of time, the condition of the wood deteriorated to such an extent that the figure fell apart leaving no single piece that could reasonably be salvaged for purposes of reconstruction.

They were therefore used, in conjunction with archive photographs to carve a replica. Samples of the paint were analysed to return the figure to its former glory, complete with gold leaf detailing. In 2007 the completed figure was taken from my workshop to become a permanent exhibit at the Blue Town museum close to the old Sheerness yard.

The restoration of this figurehead was to commissions and therefore not for sale. I would be pleased to give an estimate for the restoration of other figures, or provide a survey of a figureheads condition.