Happy Birthday, Cutty Sark!

Visit the Cutty Sark in London and help celebrate the 145th birthday of this grand old tea clipper—it's the last surviving one in the world

November sees the 145th birthday of the historic British ship, the Cutty Sark—and we think she’s looking pretty good for her age!

Cutty Sark, Greenwich, London
The Cutty Sark in dock in Greenwich (©RMG)

On 22 November, the Cutty Sark turns the grand old age of 145 years old and there’s quite a party in store. This, after all, is the world’s last surviving tea clipper, and a famous London landmark in her dock in Greenwich. She has traveled to every corner of the earth having sailed under both the Red Ensign and the Portuguese flag, visiting all major ports throughout the entirety of a busy working life, no doubt with numerous stories to tell. A huge fire in 2007 led to closure for five years while major restoration took place, and reopening with an immaculate new glass-fronted basement deck, enhancing each visitors’ experience.

The Cutty Sark now resides in Greenwich, as she has since 1954, celebrates its 60th anniversary in December in this location. It’s certainly a time for celebration, starting with a family fun weekend (1 & 2 Nov) when everyone is invited to help decorate a special area of the ship with flags, buntings and sails.

Cutty Sark, Greenwich, London
The glass-fronted deck has brought a new lease of life to the Cutty Sark (©RMG)

Nearer the ship’s official birthday, a Toddler Takeover (21 Nov) sees plenty of hands-on activities for the little ones. As soon as they are dreaming of pirates and distant lands, folk singer Karine Polwart performs in the evening in the Sammy Ofer Gallery, under the ship's hull. Get ready for 22 November for lively sea shanty performances, and interactive performances from Cutty Sark characters throughout the day, including re-enactments of its original owner, Jock Willis and Captain Woodget. That should be enough to bring out the seafaring side in anyone.