Following a very successful Appeal to raise £2.3 million to replace her boilers, paddle steamer Waverley was moved by tug from her winter berth at Science Centre, Glasgow to James Watt Dock at Greenock on Tuesday, 14 January.
Her two new boilers, built by Cochran Boilers of Annan, will be installed by Dales Marine Services Ltd of Greenock.
The ship’s distinctive red, white and black funnels have already been removed so the work can begin. This will take place over the next three months, after which the ship will undergo extensive sea trials before taking up her summer sailings for 2020.
Raising the funds for the boiler refit has seen amazing support across the UK: Our own Waverley pub at Carisbrooke put on a special family afternoon event last September and added over £2000 to the Appeal
The Paddle Steamer Preservation Society – the organisation which was responsible for saving Waverley when she was withdrawn from service by Caledonian MacBrayne back in 1973 – has contributed over £450,000 from Society reserves and individual donations.
The full 2020 timetable of sailings will be announced shortly. The plans are for Waverley to be with us here on the Solent in mid-September for two weeks, with sailings from Southampton, Portsmouth and Yarmouth for Round the Island, to Swanage, the Dorset Coast and Weymouth. The steamer will then be sailing on the Thames until early October.
Photo: PS Waverley taken at James Watt Dock, Greenock by Paul Semple, Waverley Excursions Ltd