RRS Discovery to light up Dundee city centre this weekend

The historic RRS Discovery will be lighting up Dundee’s Caird Hall this weekend as part of Light Nights, thanks to a pupil from Rosebank Primary School.

Primary 7 pupil Jessica Chen will see her 3D model of the Antarctic exploration ship projected onto the city’s Caird Hall as part of the event this Friday and Saturday.

Light Nights marks the finale of the nationwide Festival of Architecture and the start of Dundee’s Christmas celebrations. Designs from the BBC project ‘Build it’ will be projected onto the back of the Caird Hall with crowds gathering in Slessor Gardens to enjoy the show from 7.40pm.

School pupils between the ages of 7 and 14 were asked to create some of the nation’s most popular landmark buildings using 3D design software such as Minecraft, TinkerCad and Sketchup. Jessica chose as her subject the iconic ship, now one of the city’s major tourist attractions.

While Jessica’s impressive 3D model show the RRS Discovery in all her glory, the historic ship is currently looking somewhat different as it undergoes a nine-month restoration project. The ship’s ropes, masts, spars and bowsprit – some pieces more than 90 years old – have been transported to a shipyard in Gloucester to undergo cleaning and repair works to help preserve her for future generations.

A crowdfunding campaign launched to raise money towards the restoration costs has less than two weeks to go and £15,000 left to raise. The £40,000 campaign has been backed by everyone from primary school children and a newborn baby, to businesses and individuals here and abroad, to TV presenter Lorraine Kelly, a patron of RRS Discovery’s operator Dundee Heritage Trust.

Paul Jennings, executive director of Dundee Heritage Trust, which operates RRS Discovery, said:

“We can’t wait to see the RRS Discovery up in lights this weekend by way of Jessica’s wonderful 3D model. Jessica has captured the historic ship in great detail with her design. It’s timely, since the restoration work the ship is currently undergoing is to preserve her for generations to come, and since Discovery will reopen to the public on Monday.”

Rosebank Primary School, Dundee Heritage Trust’s school-in-residence, works closely with the charity on projects related to RRS Discovery and Captain Robert Falcon Scott’s Antarctic voyage. Pupils from the school raised funds towards the crowdfunding campaign with a bake sale which raised £30.

The public can make donations here: https://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/rrs-discovery-conservation-project-2016-17?tk=a0e313b9371e91223be21265ebf508d59957318b

For more information visit www.rrsdiscovery.com