All hands on deck!

20th March 2024
All hands on deck!

The shipwright team has just completed the planking on the foredeck marking another significant step in the ongoing restoration of The Golden Hinde. 

The foredeck is an area towards the bow (front) of a ship and above the fo’c’sle (forecastle). This area was used to store things such as rigging equipment that needed to be easily accessible on a voyage. There was a similar arrangement at the stern (back) of the ship - the aftercastle.  Fighting ships were designed to be floating castles to try and prevent attackers boarding, whilst providing platforms for archers, and these two ‘castles’ at each end give Tudor galleons their recognisable shape.  

The planks for The Golden Hinde’s foredeck were made from Canadian Douglas Fir imported from Vancouver Island.  

Explaining the process of making the planks (or deck boards), Lead Shipwright Toby Millinder said:

“The foredeck on a ship is very well used so the wooden planks have to be hard wearing. The deck boards are quarter sawn which results in the annular rings being perpendicular to the face of the planks.  This ensures good wear-resistance with the hard winter growth upstanding, whilst providing greater dimensional stability. By using this technique, the wood is less likely to expand or contract which makes the deck less leaky and the planks don’t lose their shape by either cupping or crowning. The stability of quarter sawn wood is the reason why it is also often used to make string instruments. It’s important that the shape of a violin, for example, doesn’t change, otherwise it could affect how it sounds.”

In News