Following their national exposure on the BBC’s geographical programme, ‘Coast’, the Purton Hulks are destined to make a welcome return to our television screens later in the autumn.
Once again this peaceful river setting in the heart of Gloucestershire’s green belt is to be the location for continued debate and discussion regarding the nation’s rapidly dwindling maritime heritage.
Set amongst the rolling backdrop of the Forest of Dean, the Purton foreshore and its now famous hulks are set to be catapulted into the public eye, following the recent filming by the BBC for its popular investigative reporting series, ‘Inside Out’.
The program, which is due to be screened in September 2009, will be hosted by eminent maritime archaeologist and veteran presenter, Professor Mark Horton. The programme will attempt to unravel the complex and long running legal battle that seeks to have this unique collection of remains protected for the nation. Filming took place during a packed weekend of archaeology and surveying led by the Friends of Purton, which was attended by the Nautical Archaeology Society, Cotswold Archaeology and the MP for Stroud, David Drew.
Friends’ founder, Paul Barnett remains certain that the site is worthy of national recognition, despite the repeated and ongoing incidents of vandalism. He said: “We remain indebted to the BBC and Professor Horton for highlighting the case, and urge all to contact their MP in support.”
This position has now been further strengthened by David Drew MP for Stroud who stated: “I am pleased that under the Marine Bill we now have some protection for marine shoreline artefacts – but we will have to see how this works in practice. I have been talking to both English Heritage and the Heritage Lottery Fund on how we can use the legislation to fully protect the Purton Hulks and to find some funding to get this really exciting project the support it now needs.”
Previously on The Attic : Ship’s Graveyard