As Discovery’s masts go back up, entry price comes down

The historic ship RRS Discovery, now a major visitor attraction in Dundee, is getting ready to show off her newly refurbished look in time for the summer.

And as the ship’s refurbished masts and rigging go back up, the popular visitor attraction is cutting admission prices by 50%.

The ship that carried Captain Robert Falcon Scott and crew to the Antarctic, built in Dundee, has been undergoing vital restoration work since late last year, when rigging and masts were removed and transported to a specialist shipbuilder in Gloucester.

The same company, T. Nielsen, will now spend the next three weeks reassembling the ship in time for summer visitors.

Although the ship itself will be closed for the next few weeks, the award-winning visitor centre at Discovery Quay, Dundee remains open, with admission prices cut by 50% during that time.

Admission includes entry to the RRS Discovery exhibition, which tells the story of the building of the ship in Dundee through to Captain Scott and his crew’s grueling expedition to the Antarctic. The stories are told through hands-on interactive and computer-based displays, an audio-visual show, and artefacts from the ship. Visitors can also do a virtual tour of the ship thanks to an interactive augmented reality exhibit, using Xbox controllers, developed by St. Andrews University.

The visitor centre also includes a café and a gift shop.

RRS Discovery’s repair programme was funded partly by a crowdfunding campaign, which raised more than £40,000 and was fronted by TV presenter Lorraine Kelly. Dundee Heritage Trust, which operates the popular visitor attraction, is still seeking donations towards the overall £350,000 cost of renovating the ship.

Paul Jennings, executive director of Dundee Heritage Trust, said:

“The restoration work to the masts and rigging went very smoothly down in Gloucester and we’re excited, as I’m sure the public is, to see Discovery in all her masted glory again. While the T. Nielsen team works to get her shipshape again, we’re offering great deals for visitors to our exhibition, as well as the chance to do virtual tours of the ship.”

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