24th April 2015 marks the 50th Anniversary of the first dive by ‘Project Solent Ships’ in their search for the Mary Rose.
The team, consisting of Alexander McKee, John Towse, Alan Lee, John Baldry and Roger Hale, began their search for Henry VIII’s warship close to the site of the Royal George. This was because the Deane Brothers, who rediscovered the wreck of the Mary Rose in 1836, were working near the site of the Royal George when they recovered the first of the Mary Rose’s guns. After the Deane Brothers had finished their salvage efforts, the ship was believed destroyed, but McKee had always insisted that it had survived.
They wouldn’t dive on the actual site of the Mary Rose until the following year, and not locate her timbers until 1971, but this was the start of a long, ambitious project to find, recover and display the Mary Rose, that continues to this day.