Keeping alive our maritime heritage


The business of preserving Ships is a difficult one. This month our preservation file covers tugs, following on from that in the May issue, which looked at submarines preserved around the world. Ships Monthly is fully in support of all those hard-working volunteers involved in maritime preservation projects, of which there are a great many, particularly round the United Kingdom. Butpreserving any kind of ship or vessel is a difficult and usually expensive business. And so those involved are to be commended and admired for their efforts.

There are many success stories in the world of ship preservation, notably Medway Queen, which was rededicated on 27 July in the Albion Dock, Bristol, where, over the last four years, she has been rebuilt – the first fully-riveted steel hull to be constructed in the UK for over 50 years. But more work is to be done, and a new boiler is required, for which the Medway Queen Preservation Society does not yet have funding, and this highlights the major issue facing those wishing to preserve ships.

But while many ships are successfully operated, there are also – inevitably – failures. So while the paddle steamer Waverley is regularly packed with day-trippers, problems continue with her sistership Balmoral, which remains moored in Bristol harbour while £350,000 towards the cost of refitting her is found.

We will continue to report on the preservation projects, such as that proposed for HMS Edinburgh (see page 19), and offer our support to all involved who give their time and energy to ensure that our Maritime Heritage is preserved.


Nicholas Leach


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