Rescue Motor Launch 497 - the Fairmile

The National Museum of the Royal Navy have taken over the operation of Hartlepool's Maritime Experience. 


  • 2019 has marked the start of a regeneration project for The National Museum of the Royal Navy Hartlepool with the arrival of Rescue Motor Launch 497 – the Fairmile. The 34-metre long Rescue Motor Launch 497 has had a varied history. She began life rescuing fallen airmen in the Second World War, latterly providing a ferry service in the South West.
  • She was acquired by the Portsmouth-based National Museum of the Royal Navy in 2015 following a grant of £90,600 from the National Lottery’s Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) and £5,000 each from the Coastal Forces, Heritage Trust, and the National Museum.

  • The move has been made possible by a Tees Valley Combined Authority grant of £499,250 which, combined with an investment by the National Museum, forms part of a larger regeneration project to the value of £1.1 million.

  • The RML 497 has been moved to Hartlepool.

Next Steps

  • Develop visitor numbers and expand the visitor offer of the site.
  • For more information on the RML - 497, click here

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