The Matthew is a replica of a ship that was sailed from Bristol to Newfoundland in 1497 by John Cabot. The modern Matthew was built in 1997 and sailed to Newfoundland to commemorate the 500 years anniversary of Cabot’s journey five hundred years earlier.
On the way to The Matthew I bumped into John Cabot.He spends all his time now watching the ships in the harbour. On reaching The Matthew we found that it was ‘free to board’ which is excellent news for anyone interested in historic ships especially if they don’t have much money.On the front of the ship there is a white dog that I think might be a greyhound. It looked rather like he might be holding onto a small surfboard.Once on board I climbed up the steps to the front of the ship.I promptly rang the ship’s bell, which momentarily caused lots of people to look at me.I was about to come down the stairs when a volunteer lady who helps look after The Matthew told me I must turn around and come down backwards as I might fall going face first.I took her advice and safely reached the bottom. I stopped for a little rest, sitting in the life ring in order not to get my bottom too soggy.There is an excellent view of the old steam cranes from The Matthew.Here I am inspecting the steering rod. It is incredible to think this little ship has travelled 2271 miles across the ocean.There are many piles of rope everywhere. Ropes are very important in a sailing ship and are used to raise, lower and control the sails. I think I might just get all tangled up in them if I tried to use them.I peered out of one of the little port holes, being careful not to get stuck. I could see some water below so quickly pulled my head back. Water is a big problem for me as I soak it up and cannot swim.Before leaving I put a donation in the box. I like The Matthew and the money helps to maintain her. I am hoping the humans might take me on a cruise on The Matthew one day.
For more information about The Matthew see: http://www.thematthew.co.uk
Horace, when we moved down to Somerset four years ago, the Matthew was one of the first things we saw sail past the window. A lovely ship but don’t think I would want to sail all the way to America on her.