BBC to join Viking Ship Expedition

One of the World’s most popular history TV-programmes – the renowned ‘Timewatch’ on the BBC – plans a 50 minutes documentary on the expedition from Denmark to Ireland.

On Sunday July 1st the largest Viking ship reconstruction in the world The Sea Stallion from Glendalough will leave the Viking Ship Museum in Roskilde and set its course for the Irish capital, Dublin.

An expedition not carried out for a thousand years. An expedition being one of the hugest marine archaeological trials ever. For six weeks an international crew of 65 will test every detail of the reconstructed ship – in the waters it was originally built to ply.

Scientific tests have documented that the original war ship was built in Dublin in 1042 and 30 years later scuttled in the fjord north of Roskilde in Denmark. Now – in the summer of 2007 – a precise reconstruction of the original ship will cross the North Sea sail north of Scotland into the Atlantic and finally southwards through the Irish Sea. Homeward bound for Dublin.

The journey will be 1000 nautical miles or more – and the BBC will be with the Sea Stallion all the way.

“We are proud and deeply thankful that BBC ‘Timewatch’ have joined the expedition. Besides the scientific testing of the ship one of our main obligations during the expedition will be dissemination of the Vikings, their ship building tradition and their navigation and seafaring skills. In that respect a ‘Timewatch’ documentary is by far all we could have hoped for,” head of the Sea Stallion Secretary at the Viking Ship Museum Preben Rather Soerensen says.

In a statement the Editor of the BBC Timewatch series, John Farren said: "Sometimes you come across a story that is intriguing history - and a great adventure. This is just such a story. Which small boy hasn't dreamt of sailing with the Vikings? Well now we all get a chance to do that - for the first time in 900 years!"

The BBC-crew will work part of the time on board the Sea Stallion and part of the time on board a support vessel. The tv-documentary is planned to be broadcast in the autumn 2007.

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