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After more than two years of extensive research and development, using information and sources previously unavailable, this is the most historically accurate, highly detailed kit of Victory in her Trafalgar condition available.
Our model is very different to other manufacturers, and the amendments are the result of our own research verified by Mr. Peter Goodwin, and further research provided by Mr. Goodwin.
Mr. Goodwin is the Keeper and Curator of H.M.S. Victory in Portsmouth and is currently heading the project, researching Victory's true Trafalgar configuration. It was the intention of the Navy to restore Victory to this configuration by the 2005 bicentennial celebrations. Unfortunately, due to insurance and financial difficulties this was not possible.
Forever associated with Nelson's last battle, H.M.S. Victory is one of the most famous ships of all time, and is now preserved as a major part of the Royal Naval Museum in Portsmouth. The ship's survival is particularly appropriate since Victory is not only an example of the ultimate sailing warship ~ the three decker First Rate ~ but she was also the most popular and successful 100-Gun ship of the period.
Forty years old by the time of Trafalgar (1805), she had been the flagship of half a dozen Admirals, and was to continue in active service until 1812.
This was not the first ship of the Royal Navy to bear the name Victory, there were in fact four predecessors:
1. The first Victory was built in 1559. In 1586, she was rebuilt to 800 tons and carried 34 guns with a crew of 750. At the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588, she was the flagship of Sir John Hawkins.
2. Phineas Pett designed the second Victory. She was built at Deptford and launched in 1620. Rebuilt in 1666 to 1029 tons and carried 42 guns and a crew of 500.
3. The Royal James of 1675 was renamed the third Victory in 1691. She was rebuilt in 1695 to 1486 tons and carried 100 guns and a crew of 754.
4. The fourth Victory suffered a tragic fate. Launched in 1737, she was of 1920 tons, carried 100 guns and had a crew of 900. She was lost during a gale while off the Casquets in October 1744. Her whole crew perished with her ~ this tragedy caused the name Victory to be deleted, temporarily, from the Admiralty's list of ship names.
This, the fifth Victory, was one of twelve ships ordered by the Navy Board on June 6th 1759 ~ more than 40 years before the battle of Trafalgar for which she is famed. Designed by Sir Thomas Slade, construction began at Chatham Dockyard on July 23rd 1759, the 'marvelous year' (Annus Mirabilis).
This, the year of victories, marked the turning point of the 'seven years war' for Britain. These facts may well have played a significant part in the naming of the vessel and the name Victory being restored to the Admiralty list of ships.