The amazing discovery of the remains of a ship beneath the floor of the Wheelwright’s Shop at Chatham Historic Dockyard has been identified as HMS Namur, which was launched this month 260 years ago!
The Namur was a Second Rate ship-of-the-line (90 guns) launched in 1756. Namur had a distinguished service career and fought in several significant naval actions during the Seven Years’ War and Napoleonic Wars. The ship also has a range of significant associations: Charles Austen, the brother of the famous author Jane Austen, was Captain of the Namur in 1811 and James Alexander Gordon who was Superintendent at Chatham Dockyard between 1832 and 1837 served as an officer on Namur during the Napoleonic War. Further, Olaudah Equiano one of the earliest authors of an African slave memoir served on Namur during the Seven Years’ War!