Guernsey’s Roman ship moves to Fort Grey

Timbers from Guernsey’s Roman ship the 'Asterix' will be moving to Rocquaine in the coming months.

The ship was discovered in St Peter Port harbour thirty years ago, and had been undergoing conservation work in Portsmouth before being moved to Guernsey Museum.

Now the Museum is converting a building on the Guernsey Pearl site so that the large oak timbers can be kept in a stable environment.

Members of the public will be able to view the main timbers once they are in place.

The Museum has been looking at this site for a number of years, with the intention for it to become a medium term home for the timbers.

It is a modern building large enough to contain the timbers, yet small enough for us to be able to control its temperature and relative humidity easily.

This is essential to prevent the 1,700-year old wood from warping and cracking.

– Dr Jason Monaghan, Museum Director

What is the Asterix?

Asterix was a Romano-Celtic trading vessel that caught fire and sank in St Peter Port harbour around AD 280.

The original ship was between 22 and 25 metres long.

It was rediscovered by local diver Richard Keen in 1982 and raised between 1984 and 1986 by the Guernsey Maritime Trust.

17 metres of its lower parts remain. It is the largest and most intact ship surviving of its type, and the largest object