26 April 2022
Warm welcome for Her Royal Highness, The Princess Royal as she visits unique D-Day survivor LCT 7074.
The National Museum of the Royal Navy has announced that Her Royal Highness The Princess Royal visited unique D-Day survivor LCT 7074 at the D-Day Story, Southsea in April. As the patron of the National Museum of the Royal Navy, Princess Anne inaugurated LCT 7074 and thanked the organisations and individuals who have worked together on this prestigious award-winning heritage project. LCT 7074 is the only surviving Landing Craft (Tank) that participated in Operation Neptune, the naval dimension of Operation Overlord, the allied invasion of German-occupied Western Europe in 1944 known as D-Day.
A six-year long project to raise, conserve and interpret the 200ft long vessel concluded with opening of the ship to the public at the D-Day Story, Southsea. Her move, from Portsmouth Naval Base to Southsea seafront, in an echo of D-Day itself, was dogged by complexity, delay, working against shifting tides, high winds, and a race against time and road closures, all during COVID restrictions.
Professor Dominic Tweddle, Director General of the National Museum of the Royal Navy said, “The sheer scale of LCT 7074 is breath-taking and we were honoured to bring her back to life. We’re delighted to welcome our patron, The Princess Royal, today, and for her to give personal thanks to the skill and dogged determination of the project team to save LCT and the story of D-Day for future generations.”
LCT has now been restored to her former glory in a joint collaboration by the National Museum of the Royal Navy (NMRN) and Portsmouth City Council with essential support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, the National Heritage Memorial Fund, the Notsew Orm Sands Trust and COLAS and invaluable assistance from the Royal Navy for allowing a ship hall in Portsmouth Naval Base to be used as the project base.
The vessel first opened to visitors in late 2020 and despite the impact of Covid, nearly 40,000 visitors have since gone aboard. LCT 7074 can be visited as part of the D-Day Story museum, on Southsea seafront, run by Portsmouth City Council.
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