HTS Temporary Building Aids Restoration of WW2 Rescue Ship

HTS Temporary Building Aids Restoration of WW2 Rescue Ship
HTS Temporary Building Aids Restoration of WW2 Rescue Ship
HTS Temporary Building Aids Restoration of WW2 Rescue Ship
  • Building

    Custom L-Series

  • Width


  • Length


  • Eave Height


  • Roof Type

    Grey Thermo Insulated


HTS were recently commissioned to provide a temporary building for the restoration of an historic WW2 rescue ship at the National Museum of The Royal Navy (NMRN) in Hartlepool.  The ship (RML 497) would have rescued and saved the lives of many WW2 pilots lost in the channel during the war and playing a small part in its restoration was a sobering and humbling experience for everyone involved at HTS.  Once restored to its former glory, the ship will take centre stage in a new extension at the museum.

Originally berthed in Southampton, the fragile ship was exposed to the elements and needed to be moved to a dry controlled environment for its restoration. As the ship couldn’t move under its own steam, it was transported on a cradle by sea and road to the museum. The relocation needed to be complete before the onset of winter weather risked further deterioration to the vessel’s fragile state.  The space needed for the restoration was to comfortably accommodate the 77 year-old rescue ship which included 8.00m clearance space in the roof.


The museum sent out tender documents to supply and install a temporary building, with the essential dimensions of the structure, location and timelines. HTS were chosen for the project based on the following aspects:

  • HTS were able to re-engineer one of their L-Series buildings by providing an 8.00m clearance through the roof on a standard 7.20m high frame.
  • This method of customising an existing standard building, as opposed to designing a bespoke structure for the project, provided the most cost-effective solution.
  • HTS also worked closely with the civics contractor to design the concrete ring beam that the building was going to be installed on.
  • HTS were able to upgrade the roof panels to the requested grey colour.
  • The rapid build program fitted in perfectly with the timing of the relocation and restoration.
  • HTS were able to work safety and effectively within the relatively tight space for the build – 2m from an existing building and close to the waterside.
  • The build took 6 days, beginning on the Monday morning and complete by the Friday, all bar the front end of the structure. Over the weekend the ship was reversed into its new home for the next 5 years and at the beginning of the following week HTS returned to complete the front end.


  • The cost-effective customisation to provide the 8.00m clearance ensured the temporary building part of the project was a relatively small cost within the overall £5m budget.
  • The temporary building is able to protect the ship from any further weather damage and corrosion and house it safely while it undergoes its well earned renovation.
  • Although the museum has purchased the building, at the end of the 5-year project they will be able to easily dismantle and remove it and revert the site back to its original or new purpose.