A ten-year plan has been launched to create a Cold War naval museum in Plymouth with the hunter-killer submarine HMS Courageous at its heart.
The Cold War Maritime Heritage Museum aims to give voice not just to the Silent Service, but also the surface fleet, RAF Maritime Patrol Aircraft, and other units and formations who were in the thick of the action until the last days of the Soviet Union in 1991.
It’s planned for the naval base’s historic South Yard as part of the city’s Oceansgate regeneration project, and also intends to celebrate Plymouth’s rich naval history and the work of the dockyard to support ships and submarines.
The centrepiece will be nuclear-powered hunter-killer HMS Courageous, in service between 1971 and 1992. She’s been opened to the public on a limited basis for nearly two decades, with tours offered by volunteers who have also painstakingly restored her over that time to reflect how she appeared in the 1980s at the height of the Cold War.
A small team, led by Rear Admiral John Weale, who retired as head of the Silent Service earlier this year, is working with Plymouth City Council, the Royal Navy, MOD, the Courageous Association, and National Museum of the Royal Navy to look into the feasibility and cost of the project – for which they need an estimated £40,000.