A new maritime experience at Hull’s historic North End Shipyard is set to become one of the most energy efficient buildings in the UK’s cultural and heritage sector.
Due to open in 2023, as part of a five-year project that will see some of the city’s most historic attractions expanded and improved, the attraction will become the new home of the Arctic Corsair, Hull’s last remaining sidewinder trawler.
Showcasing and celebrating the trawler’s dramatic story – in a shipyard that was the original entrance to Queens Dock, the UK’s largest when it opened in the 18th century – the new attraction will include a state-of-the-art, energy-efficient ‘Passivhaus’ building.
Developed to achieve rigorous ‘Passivhaus’ standards – a German model, reducing a building’s energy consumption, requiring very little energy to heat – the new centre could see savings of up to 90 per cent compared to a typical new building. Providing high levels of comfort for staff and visitors, the system uses mainly passive heat sources like the sun, household appliances and human occupants to cover heating demand.
North End Shipyard is one of Hull’s hidden gems, an area at the very heart of the city’s maritime and trade history which spanned the world – and the place where both HMS Bounty and HMS Boreas, once commanded by Horatio Nelson, were built.
Few people also realise that it was from this port, in Defoe’s classic novel, that Robinson Crusoe set sail on his epic voyage only to get shipwrecked on a remote island.
Now it will become the new, permanent dry-berth for the Arctic Corsair, preserving her future for the next 100 years, as part of the ambitious ‘Hull: Yorkshire’s Maritime City’ project.
Making Hull’s 800 years of seafaring history even more of a key part of the city’s tourism offer, the project will ultimately create a new route to guide visitors through the city to the River Hull, highlighting its outstanding maritime heritage.
The Arctic Corsair – which has been dubbed Hull’s ‘Cutty Sark’ – is a nationally significant vessel representing the end of a once major industry. Built in Beverley in 1960, her career has included a world-record catch and conflict in the Cod Wars during the 1970s.
Today she is the nation’s only distant-water sidewinder trawler consistently accessible as a floating attraction and open to the public. In 2019, she sailed along the River Hull for the first time in 20 years, into temporary storage.
Once completed, the new two-storey visitor centre will tell the story of the trawler and the heyday of Hull’s trawling industry as well as enable visitors to walk right under the ship’s hull and tour the vessel to appreciate her true size and scale.
The energy-efficient design of the new building, aiming for net zero carbon in operation, supports Hull City Council’s 2030 Carbon Neutral Strategy by generating energy through renewable technologies to offset the carbon associated with the energy consumed within the building.
For more details about the Maritime City project, visit https://maritimehull.co.uk
For all other tourism information about Hull, see www.visithull.org