Campaign to save last sea-going paddle steamer

Posted on 07 Jul 2019 and read 910 times
Campaign to save last sea-going paddle steamerAn urgent appeal to raise £2.3 million to safeguard the future of the last sea-going paddle steamer — the PS Waverley — was launched last month, and £100,000 has already been donated.

The ship’s 2019 season was cancelled earlier this year, following the discovery of major problems with its 20-year-old boilers.

Paul Semple, chairman of the Paddle Steamer Preservation Society, said: “We are heartened by the support so far. It is clear that huge numbers of people in Britain and around the world want to see Waverley sail again.

However, the financial challenge that faces the paddle steamer is very significant, and we urgently need more funds to let us place the orders and then carry out the work over the next nine months.”

It is hoped that the paddle steamer will be back in operation in 2020.

PS Waverley was built in 1946 and sailed from Craigendoran on the Firth of Clyde to Arrochar on Loch Long until 1973.

She was then bought by the Paddle Steamer Preservation Society and restored to her 1947 appearance. Mr Semple said:

“There’s a real determination not to allow Waverley to become a static relic. She was built to sail, and that is what so many people want to see again.

“Waverley’s unique status as the world’s last sea-going paddle steamer must not be taken for granted.

“Not for the first time, the future of the ship hangs in the balance.”

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