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Fyrskib XVII

Fyrskibet Gedser Rev, Helsingør, Denmark


The ship was built in 1895, where it was used as a lighthouse vessel for the first 24 years at Helsingør. After that, it served at Gedser Rev until 1972.
Since then, it has been a museum vessel in different harbors.
Since 2018 it has been back in Helsingør, where it started its service.
In 2003, it went through a major restauration at Hvide Sande Shipyard. In the beginning of 2024 it was towed to Hvide Sande Shipyard once again for further restoration.

History of the lightship XVII

Lightship XVII Gedser Rev has a rich history that spans over more than a century. The ship was built in 1895 at the N.F. Hansen shipyard in Odense and was originally stationed at Lappegrund near the entrance to the Øresund. It served as an important navigation point for ships sailing through the treacherous waters around Gedser Rev, south of Falster – Denmark’s southernmost point.

During World War II, the ship was confiscated by the German occupying forces and moved near Kalundborg but returned to its position at Gedser Rev after the war in 1945.

Throughout the Cold War, Gedser Rev played a role in the escape from East Germany. Many East Germans attempted to flee across the Baltic Sea towards Denmark, and at least 50 were rescued by the lightship.

The lightship was decommissioned in 1972 and was later sold to the A.P. Moller and Wife Chastine Mc-Kinney Møller Foundation, which donated it to the National Museum of Denmark. After extensive restoration completed in 2003 at Hvide Sande Shipyard, the ship was transformed into a museum vessel. It has since been open to the public and has functioned as a living museum, telling the story of Denmark’s maritime past.

In recent times, the ship was moved to Helsingør Harbor, where it is now part of the M/S Maritime Museum. In 2021, the ship received a grant that enabled further restoration, and in the beginning of 2024 it was towed to Hvide Sande Shipyard for this purpose. This ensures that Lightship XVII Gedser Rev will continue to preserve its historical significance and continue to inspire future generations.

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