THE Phoenicia, the only traditionally built replica Phoenician ship in the world, finally arrived in Lyme Regis this morning (Thursday).
The ship had been scheduled to visit Lyme last month but was cancelled at the last minute due to unforeseen circumstances. She arrived this morning and is expected to stay overnight at the Cobb with the opportunity for residents to go aboard.
Later this month, Phoenicia will make her way out of UK waters to the Mediterranean for the start of an epic cross-Atlantic attempt.
The expedition, known as ‘Phoenicians Before Columbus’, will be led by local man and captain Philip Beale FRGS, and aims to prove that the Phoenicians reached the Americas 2000 years before Columbus.
It has the support of Colonel John Blashford-Snell CBE, sailing legend Sir Robin Knox Johnston and historian and broadcaster Dan Snow, who wishes the crew “all the very best as they set off on this remarkable adventure”.
The expedition is also the proud recipient of the Captain Scott Society’s ‘Spirit of Adventure’ Award 2019. The building of Phoenicia was commissioned by Philip Beale for its first expedition – a successful circumnavigation of Africa in 2008/10.
The crew said they were looking forward to sharing the ship’s intricacies and details of their mission with residents in Lyme Regis, as part of their tour of the south coast before heading to the Mediterranean.
Lyme Regis harbourmaster Grahame Forshaw MBE said: “It’s always exciting to have a visiting vessel and very appealing.
“The arrival of Phoenicia will help freshen the mind that in the 16th/17th centuries, Lyme was the second busiest port in Britain.”
For more information on the expedition and Phoenicia’s visit to Lyme, see the website www.phoeniciansbeforecolumbus.com