The Cutty Sark Bolt trophy is awarded to winners of the annual Tamesis Club sailing race

Since 2007, Peter Mason and the members of Tamesis Club have been raising an annual donation through a combination of their passion for sailing and admiration of the beautiful Cutty Sark. Below we learn more about how this unique 'Cutty Sark Bolt' fundraising initiative came to light and continues to help support the ongoing preservation of the world’s most famous tea clipper.

The fundraising story behind 'The Cutty Sark Bolt'

Peter Mason is an active member of Tamesis Club in Teddington and worked as Chief Engineer on the Cutty Sark Conservation Project from 2005 to 2009. Peter worked directly for Richard Doughty, Director of former Cutty Sark Trust, having been put into the project by Maurice de Rohan who was Chairman of the Cutty Sark Trust.

The original Cutty Sark Muntz metal bolts holding the planks onto the frames were a problem in that they could not be simply reused after disassembly of the ship. It struck the team that the original bolts would need to be re-manufactured into new bolts (or scrapped), and so Peter asked Richard Doughty to let him have just one of the bolts for his sailing club (Tamesis). The promise was to repurpose the bolt into a trophy which members would compete for in an annual sailing race. The entry fees from the race could then be donated to Royal Museums Greenwich in support of Cutty Sark. The plinth for the trophy was made from a piece of teak from the ship. They were careful not to use historically important Victorian teak but took a scrap from the 1950’s replacement deck which had been destroyed in the fire in 2007. 

On behalf of Tamesis Club, Peter and its members have been faithfully raising donations for 15 years, and have raised around £1,500 from this one bolt! Keeping in theme with Cutty Sark, consolation prizes for runners up are packets of tea! 

Peter Mason presenting 2022 winner Jon Redding with the Cutty Sark Bolt. Photo: Zoe Adams

The Cutty Sark love continues

In the near future, Peter and the members of Tamesis Club plan to host a special lunch themed on food eaten on board the Cutty Sark. Their chef is really enthused with the idea of re-creating historic food in support of Cutty Sark. 

Cutty Sark menu created by the chef at the Tamesis Club

The document shown below specified the amount of meat, bread, dried peas and rice allotted to each man, each week as well as a daily supply of tea, coffee, water and of course lime and lemon juice to prevent the perils of scurvy while on board Cutty Sark. We look forward to hearing more on the Tamesis Club's special Cutty Sark themed lunch and the creations of their chef.

Agreement and Account of crew for the ship’s 22nd voyage, 1891

Thank you to Peter and Tamesis Club

The generous support provided through this inspiring fundraising story is incredibly special and significant to the Museum. From all of us here at the at Royal Museums Greenwich, we thank Peter and Tamesis Club for their generosity and feel privileged to have been chosen as a place to receive their valuable and ongoing support.

Do you have a fundraising idea or story of your own?

We’d love to hear from you! Please get in touch with Sarah Beaumont by emailing [email protected] or call 020 8312 8569.

Learn more about other ways you can help support our work here.

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