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SS Great Britain launched (1843)

SS Great Britain launched (1843)

SS Great Britain is a museum ship and former passenger steamship, which was advanced for her time. She was the longest passenger ship in the world from 1845 to 1854. She was designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel (1806–1859), for the Great Western Steamship Company’s transatlantic service between Bristol and New York City.

Brunel’s SS Great Britain is one of the most important historic ships in the world. When she was launched in 1843 she was called ‘the greatest experiment since the Creation’. By combining size, power and innovative technology, Brunel created a ship that changed history.


Activity Ideas:

  • Find out more about the SS Great Britain with History Hit’s Dan Snow – here
  • Explore other famous ships, such as the Titanic, with our talk and quiz – here
  • Commemorate the SS Great Britain by creating your own paper racing vessels – here
  • Watch archive footage of the SS Great Britain return to dock – here