Article type Event
Published 18th August 2014
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Greenwich Hospital has commissioned local designer makers to create a commemorative stamp for the class B Tall Ship Leila, after it was discovered the ship was returning to her home port without a ships stamp - the stamp marking a ship's participation in the Tall Ships Festival.
The Stamp Makers, Chris McAlees and David Millie of the Old Print Works, who have a stall at Greenwich Market, collaborated with Elaine Marshall of Greenwich Printmakers in the market, who researched and designed the artwork for the stamp.
Elaine Marshall designed the 4cm stamp by learning about Leila's rigging and sails from a boat-owning, maritime expert friend, then intricately drawing the ship. Elaine's daughter-in-law Estelle, a graphic designer, then added traditional lettering, the composite image eventually scaled down to the 4cm size needed for stamp makers Chris and David to create the stamp in brass.
Skipper of Leila, David Beaven, will be presented the stamp by Greenwich Hospital. He says: "It will be great to have a stamp - especially with Greenwich on it - for collectors, as well as stamping crew and watch leader certificates of achievement for young people."
The ship was built in 1892 by F Wilkinson of Charlton, but very little else is known about its origins or its maker. Leila tasted glory briefly in the early 20th century, winning the 1904 Round Britain Race. In 2008, the ship was discovered in Great Yarmouth on the verge of sinking, and underwent a lengthy renovation in Southwold Suffolk. Restored to its former glory, Leila is now taking young people to sea, setting sail from Lowestoft and Great Yarmouth, and is soon to take part in the Falmouth to Greenwich Tall Ships Race.
David Beaven went on to say: "Anyone who can help us with historical information about local boat maker F Wilkinson of Charlton will be rewarded with a free berth on the parade of sail down the Thames."
Head of Property at Greenwich Hospital, Gillie Bexson, added that "It is very apt that Greenwich Hospital, with its naval heritage, has helped make this home coming for Leila and her crew that extra bit special and hopefully it will lead to more being known about her story."
Copies of the Leila Stamp will be available to buy from the Old Print Works stall in Greenwich Market for £20. The design will also be used on commemorative badges which will be available to buy in the market for £1.25.
If you have the taste for all things maritime, check out the programme for this year's Totally Thames, happening in September with events all along the river, and many near Greenwich. Also, take a look at how you can get nautical in Greenwich…