Via a total of five lifts from enormous cranes and giant trucks, the ship was hoisted out of Collins Barracks’ huge yard, over the electric railway and a large memorial, and driven all the way through Dublin’s streets to be put quietly and without fuss back in the Liffey.
This was an operation that really called up boyhood feelings and dreams of toys worth millions! Giant cranes towered up to face each other like prehistoric monsters. Slowly they turned around their axes and lifted the ship quietly and carefully with almost loving devotion.
The biggest crane could lift 1000 tons without any problem, and the crane driver sitting comfortably in his cockpit could control the crane’s hook with just a tiny joystick as he lifted the mere seven tons of the Sea Stallion up over the 130-foot high building around the National Museum.
So that was the end of the nine-month-long exhibition of the ship at the National Museum of Ireland Collins Barracks – an exhibition that attracted thousands of visitors every single day.
The ship is now moored in Dublin Port’s enormous industrial harbour. The next four weeks will be spent getting the ship ready for the voyage home to Roskilde. Two craftsmen from the Viking Ship Museum will tar, paint, equip and repair the ship with help from the Irish members of the crew – and they are going to be busy.