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No extra staff to watch Cutty Sark

PUBLISHED: 16:42 19 March 2008 | UPDATED: 09:35 23 August 2010

SECURITY on a historic tourist attraction is to stay the same despite a massive fire that nearly destroyed it almost a year ago. Just two security guards will patrol the Cutty Sark, Greenwich and the surrounding gardens - the same amount that were worki

SECURITY on a historic tourist attraction is to stay the same despite a massive fire that nearly destroyed it almost a year ago.

Just two security guards will patrol the Cutty Sark, Greenwich and the surrounding gardens - the same amount that were working on May 21, the night it was set alight.

Anti-intruder security has been beefed up by barbed wire and more CCTV cameras around the 137-year-old ship.

Residents and former cadets have special memories of ' the greatest ship ever to sail' from its time based in Greenhithe. The vessel was moored alongside HMS Worchester between Dartford and Gravesend from 1938 to 1954.

But nearly a year after an inferno gutted the Cutty Sark, no dramatic changes have been made to protecting the tea clipper and no answers as to how the fire started are forthcoming.

Richard Doughty, chief executive of the Cutty Sark Trust, (pictured above) said: "It is a small site and having two people on site as well as cameras is deemed to be adequate by the construction company.

"They are very experienced and are going on the advice of the police."

Heat sensors also monitor the site, which alerted the fire brigade at the time of the fire according to Mr Doughty.

The site's security cabin has also been extended along the side of the ship, whereas before it was attached to the side of the site.

The Cutty Sark Trust has received £22.75 million in public money from the Heritage Lottery Fund, and in the last month has raise £1.1 million from private donations.

President of the Trust, the Duke of Edinburgh, also hosted fundraising events at St James' Palace.

But Mr Doughty added: "We still need to raise around about £4 million to do everything that we want to do.

"We hope that we will be able to move further forward once we have had a chance to follow up on the fundraising events."

The Cutty Sark is currently being stripped down to its iron hull but in September its wooden exterior is expected to be reconstructed.

A free viewing platform allowing visitors to see inside the ship's skeleton is expected to be erected before May.

The full restoration of the Cutty Sark is expected to be complete in early 2010.

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