Arctic Corsair, Hull: Dry dock gate with links back to Medieval period in Yorkshire to be replaced for arrival of historic Arctic Corsair
A dry dock’s gate is set to be replaced in a part of Hull with shipping links dating back to Medieval times ahead of the Arctic Corsair’s move there.
Plans have been lodged to replace the gate on the former Queen’s Dock Basin dry dock, at Dock Office Row in Hull’s Old Town, ahead of the historic vessel’s arrival.
They stated that the current gate was dilapidated and would be replaced as part of wider works to the North End Shipyard being done for the Yorkshire’s Maritime City Project.
The project includes the transformation of Hull Maritime Museum, the creation of a collections store at the Dock Office Chambers and the conservation of the Arctic Corsair and Spurn Lightship.
It also includes the creation of a new Orientation Centre for visitors at the North End Shipyard which is currently derelict.
The restoration of a Scotch Derrick Crane, which was used at the Shipyard, is among efforts to prepare it for visitors when the site is set to reopen next year.
The gate at the Central Dry Dock, formerly Queen’s Dock Basin, is set to be replaced entirely under plans lodged with Hull City Council.
The riverside face of the new gate will be finished with steel sheet piles so that it looks similar to the current one when viewed from across the River Hull.
A rubber seal will be placed around it to stop water from the river from getting into the berth.
The existing gate on the dry dock, which was subject to modern alterations during the last century, will only be lowered once for the berthing of the Arctic Corsair.
The North End Shipyard sat close to the North Gate of the Medieval Walls which ran around what is now Hull’s Old Town.
Dock berths are visible there on the Hollar Map of Hull, dating from 1640.
Queen’s Dock Basin sat next to a bridge which separated it from a lock leading to Queen’s Dock which was first built in 1778.
The area occupied by the dock is now home to Queen’s Gardens.
Documents about the replacement gate stated Hull was home to shipbuilding yards from the end of the 12th Century.
They stated: “The rapid development of Hull was primarily in response to its growing import and export trades.
“Trade was reliant on vessels to transport goods.
“Records of the development of a shipwright’s craft guild are recorded from 1369 after the path of the River Hull was altered.
“Ships would initially be built on land and then dragged to the water’s edge at low tide or rolled on timbers, with workers dragging or pushing the ship into the water via a slipway, independent of the tide.
“The development of the shipyard areas to the north and south of the Central Dry Dock into more permanent dry dock structures occurred during the 18th Century.
“Modern alterations have been made to both the Number I Dry Dock and the Central Dry Dock during the 20th Century, but they have not been used since the 1990s and have become overgrown and silted up.”