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HMS Frederick William


Object connections:

Collection Figureheads
Gallery locationNeptune Court (Floor plans)
PeopleDepiction: King Frederick William III of Prussia
VesselsFrederick William (1860)

Object details:

Object ID FHD0077
Description Figurehead representing HRH Prince Frederick William III of Prussia (1770-1840). It comes from HMS 'Frederick William' , a 110-gun screw auxiliary first-rate, launched at Portsmouth Dockyard in 1860 after 27 years on the stocks. She had been started in 1833 as the 'Royal Sovereign', then renamed 'Royal Frederick' and only finally 'Frederick William', and by the time she was completed she was already obsolete. In October 1876 she was renamed 'Worcester' and from 1877 to 1939 was lent by the Navy to act as the second of the boys' nautical training ships of that name in the Thames, off Greenhithe. From 1939 to 1945 the 'Worcester' Thames Nautical Training College (as it became) went ashore to Footscray Place for the duration of World War II, during which the 'ex-Frederick William' was again used by the Navy and officially handed back to it in 1945. She was now in poor condition and in July 1948 the Navy sold her for breaking up but transferred the figurehead to the third 'Worcester' . This was the former London training ship 'Exmouth' - a specially built steel vessel of 1904, but looking much like her predecessor - which the college took over at the end of the war: it also had parallel use of the 'Cutty Sark' from 1938 to 1953. 'Frederick William' was moved to moorings at Grays, Essex, where in August 1948 she sank and was only raised and broken up in 1953.
Date made 1860

Credit National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London
Materials wood: pine
Measurements Overall: 2743 mm x 1600 mm x 1118 mm
  • HMS Frederick William (FHD0077)
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