Take the kids to … the Mary Rose Museum, Portsmouth

The Tudor warship that sank in the Solent in 1545 – and was raised 35 years ago today – is beautifully presented within its revamped setting and comes with fantastic artefacts and hands-on activities

Walking the Yorkshire coast: the shipwrecks and sea caves of Flamborough and beyond

The coastline between Spurn Head and Teesmouth is scattered with wrecks and rich in marine lore. With a careful eye on the tides, Kevin Rushby explores its secret history

Move over Suez, hello Stad – Norway to build world’s first tunnel for ships

Ambitious project will create 1,700-metre long passageway underneath rocky peninsula for cruise and freight ships by 2023

Spanish galleon with rumoured £1bn treasure hoard found, says Colombia’s president

The San José sank off the coast of Cartagena in 1708 and is thought to be laden with emeralds and gold and silver coins

SS Great Britain

Once on board I took a moment to look along the length of the vessel and the first impressions I had were of strength, solidity, and safety. The ship is dressed with flags and is ready for departure. SS Great Britain was originally provided with one square-rigged and five schooner-rigged iron masts. They were fastened to the spar deck with iron joints and most were hinged to allow lowering during strong headwinds. On this main deck pigs and chickens were kept to provide fresh meat and fresh eggs.

SS Great Britain had four decks, a crew of 120, and was initially fitted to accommodate a total of 360 passengers, along with 1,200 tons of cargo and 1,200 tons of coal. She was used for special trips, for example to take soldiers and horses to The Crimean War and this situation is faithfully reproduced on the bottom deck of the ship. The steerage accommodation shows how close people lived to each for months at a time on voyages to Australia and the claustrophobia was almost tangible. The first-class passengers had their own beautifully laid out state dining room with candelabras, china plates, and waiters. Other areas show surgery being performed, the cramped kitchen quarters where the meals were produced, and the officer’s quarters.

Take the kids to … HMS Victory, Portsmouth

A history-filled and fun day out exploring the story behind one of the nation’s greatest ships plus a trip around the harbour at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard