With a 6″ gun and shallow draft HMS M33 was designed for one purpose, to get close in shore and bombard the Turkish forces in the Dardanelles. M33 was one of several ‘monitors’ that had been ordered by the Admiralty in 1915. As ocean going vessels they were useless and the crews had their hearts in their mouths as they were towed around Spain and into the Mediterranean. But once these cumbersome ships reached the shallow depths of the Dardanelles they came into their own.
HMS M33 is one of only three Royal Navy Ships that survive from the First World War. Not only did she see active service in the Mediterranean she was also deployed in Russia during the Allied Intervention in 1919. She was used subsequently as a mine-laying training ship, fuelling hulk, boom defense workshop and floating office, being renamed HMS Minerva and Hulk C23 during her long life. She passed to Hampshire County Council in the 1980s and in 2014 was officially transferred to the National Museum of the Royal Navy.
In 2014 Copia Productions was commissioned alongside Maritime Films to produce a series of videos on the restoration of the ship during the lead up to her public opening in 2015. Initially we spent two days filming the removal of the major components, this included several time lapse sequences and interviews with key members of the team.
The first film covered the ship’s history and the tasks facing the restoration team. It went live in December 2014 on the Museums Youtube channel and was well received by the client. Watch it below:
For a project like M33 a video production is an important part of a PR campaign. As the public are not allowed access to the ongoing restoration it’s a great way of keeping people informed as to what’s going on. It also serves as a great record of the ships restoration.
We’ve worked on a number of video production projects for different museums. The biggest challenge we find is bringing new styles and technique to the film making process. We archived this with M33 by using recreation, graphics and time lapse, all interwoven with archive footage and stills.
We’ll be back at M33 in a month for the next video update.