Waverley made her triumphant return to service in August 2020 following her boiler refit. However Waverley is now critically short of funds to survive this winter. Without further support she can’t return to service in 2021. We are therefore asking for your help by donating to Waverley’s COVID-19 Relief Appeal.

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Autumn 1963


MV Royal Sovereign.

Woolwich paddle ferries farewell – On June 29 a London Branch Party made a Society farewell to the steamers all of which have now been sold for scrapping. As the Royal Sovereign majestically passed Woolwich at 9.55 we began our tour of John Benn which was the fastest of the quartet. There was a desolate air about the cold, but still gleaming machinery with its diagonally opposed four cylinders. With the passing of these four ships there will only remain the Dundee BL Nairn with independent port and starboard engines visible to the public.

White Funnel news – The announcement that Bristol Queen had been chartered for a three day cruise to the Isles of Scilly must have aroused the imagination of many; for this was the first time for fifty years that a paddle steamer had ventured to these islands. She made her first down channel run on May 15th to Lundy. This was followed on May 17,18 and 19 by the Scilly Isles excursion. Glen Usk left Cardiff for the breakers on April 29.

Portsmouth paddlers – The fleet now numbers two ships Ryde and Sandown. Whippingham left in tow for Belgian breakers on May 17. On July 27 a group of Wessex Branch members met at Portsmouth Dockyard to visit the Admiralty paddle tug Forceful.

Scottish notes – A continuous spell of good weather on the Firth of Clyde during July has meant busy periods on the Clyde paddlers, with, on occasions, capacity crowds. For 15/- (75p) the enthusiast can sail all day on the Clyde steamers to all piers except Ayr, Campbeltown, Inveraray and Glasgow. With this ticket your correspondent sailed one Sunday afternoon on all four paddle steamers, one turbine and a motor vessel.

Consul – PS Consul was slipped in Poole Harbour where much work was done on her and she was completely repainted. She sailed for Newhaven in mid-July. Advertised as “Britain’s most famous paddle steamer” she has been making trips from Brighton and Eastbourne, returning to Newhaven at nights.

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