Your browser is unsupported and may have security vulnerabilities! Upgrade to a newer browser to experience this site in all it's glory.
Skip to main content

BY Lucy Bannister | Thursday 24 November 2022

Work has begun on the new maritime visitor centre in Hull

Work to create a new energy efficient visitor centre for a maritime attraction in Hull has got underway.

The first major works have got underway with 38 piles being installed using a piling rig and three-tonne hammer. The piles will be drilled down as far as 24 metres in places. Following this work, a raft foundation will be laid once the piling mat has been removed and 1,000 tonnes of recycled stone taken away.

Piling works
Piling works get underway at the former North End Shipyard. Credit: Hull City Council

The two-storey visitor centre at the former North End Shipyard and the new home to the Arctic Corsair will be built to 'Passivhaus' standards, meaning the building will require very little energy to run.

It is projected to be one of the most energy efficient buildings in the UK’s cultural sector.

North End Shipyard
An artists' impression of the former, North End Shipyard. Credit Hull City Council

Hull construction company, Ashcourt Construction Ltd, has been appointed to undertake the work to construct an environmentally sustainable building. The creation of this visitor centre is part of Hull Maritime, a locally-led council regeneration project funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The new visitor attraction will enable visitors to get up close to the trawler, to learn more about her career, the record-breaking catch and what it was like to work on the trawler with first-hand experiences from former trawlermen.

The new two-storey visitor centre will also highlight the historical significance of the shipyard, which will have its story told for the very first time.

Councillor Mike Ross, Leader of Hull City Council, said: “It is great to see work get underway to create a new visitor attraction for the city.

“We know how much the Arctic Corsair is loved by many, and it is only right she is going to take centre stage in a new location and out of the water, protecting her for future generations. All thanks to funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund and lottery players.

“Residents will be able to explore their maritime heritage, a trawler that played a major role in our fishing industry and also learn about the shipbuilding past at the shipyard.”

Anne Jenkins, Executive Director, Business Delivery at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “The Arctic Corsair is well loved by the people of Hull, and we’re thrilled to see this milestone in the creation of a sustainable and accessible visitor centre for the ship being reached.

“It’s great to see this part of Hull Maritime and the project as a whole progressing well. Thanks to National Lottery players Hull’s significant maritime heritage will be at the heart of the fantastic city’s economic regeneration and ensure that for its residents, it’s a city to really be proud of.”

Andy Newbitt, Construction Director at Ashcourt Group, said: “We are thrilled to be working on the North End Shipyard project that combines a historic development with a modern and futuristic approach to create an energy efficient building and set the standard for the future of a sustainable city and industry. As a local business, we strive to continually support the community and we are proud to be a part of this new attraction for Hull.”

North End Shipyard will become the new dry berth for the Arctic Corsair and the city’s last remaining Scotch Derrick crane, which is currently being restored, will also return to a new location at the shipyard.

Arctic Corsair is currently being restored at a local ship repairs company, Dunston Ship Repairs. Once complete, the trawler will sail down the Humber estuary and River Hull for one final time, making her way to the former shipyard. Landscaping, boundary railings and works install walkways along with other infrastructure will also take place.

It is expected the new visitor attraction will open to the public in summer 2024.

The restoration of the Arctic Corsair and the regeneration of North End Shipyard is part of Hull Maritime, funded by The National Lottery Heritage Fund. Other elements include the refurbishment of Hull Maritime Museum, reconfiguration of Dock Office Chambers and restoration of the Spurn Lightship.