Great British Ships

9pm Wednesday 11th December

Episodes

HMS Victory: Nelson's Great War Ship

Rob discovers the incredible story of HMS Victory

Sunk: Mary Rose Secrets From the Deep

Who was really responsible for the sinking of the Mary Rose?

The Golden Hinde

Exploring the extraordinary story of the Golden Hind – the personal ship of England’s most notorious pirate, Sir Francis Drake.

The Cutty Sark

Rob clambers aboard to experience first-hand the beauty and superior design of this perfect sailing ship

SS Great Britain

Rob discovers what life was like on board for the thousands who set sail on this record-breaking ship

HMS Belfast

Rob Bell delves into the fascinating history of the WW2 cruiser HMS Belfast

HMS Victory: Nelson's Great War Ship

Rob discovers the incredible story of HMS Victory – Admiral Nelson’s personal flagship at the Battle of Trafalgar. When Victory was built over forty years previously, she was the largest warship in the world with firepower equivalent to a whole army on land. Yet Rob discovers that this titan of the seas was very nearly scrapped long before the battle that would ultimately seal her place in history.

Climbing on board this vast ship, Rob discovers the extraordinary feats of engineering behind Victory’s construction – from the 6000 oaks felled for her planking, to the 27 miles of rope used for her rigging. Yet if Victory was exceptional, then so too was her most famous captain, Nelson – a celebrity renowned as much for a scandalous ménage-à-trois as for his dazzling military leadership. At Trafalgar, Nelson used Victory’s formidable power to spearhead a brutal new style of naval combat – yet came to pay the ultimate price at the hour of his greatest triumph.

 

Finally, Rob explores Victory’s extraordinary survival into the modern era. Today, her dedicated crew of 17 naval officers bear witness to the fact that this great ship isn’t simply a monument to Britain’s maritime past, but also the world’s oldest, fully commissioned warship.

Credits
Producer & Director
Edit Producer
for Channel 5