PADDLE STEAMER ABOUT TO SET OFF FOR HOME

 
 
Medway Queen in the Albion Boatyard at Bristol - to be towed back by tug Christine
Pix: Michael Pratt and Bob Stokes
 

The historic paddle steamer Medway Queen - undergoing a major restoration - is about to be towed back to Kent.

The vessel has been towed from a shipyard in Bristol where she has been for rebuilding of the hull. On Monday (Nov 4th) she was moored on the Avon awaiting weather conditions for a tow back along the the South Coast to the Thames Estuary and to Gillingham on the Medway.

Medway Queen was once a familar sight on the estuary taking passengers sailing from Kent and Essex ports and up the Pool of London.

Once necessary surveys are complete and certificates issued Medway Queen will be towed out of the dry dock, manoeuvred through the locks and onto the river Avon.

This and subsequent phases of the operation will be entirely dependent on both weather and tides. You can follow the Christine’s progress back to Gillingham on www.marinetraffic.com/ais
- search for the Christine (UK registered tug), not for Medway Queen. 

The voyage is expected to take about five days. The exact date and time of arrival in Gillingham are dependent on operational requirements and will only be predictable by following the tug’s progress. It is expected to take an inshore route along the South Coast.

On her arrival on the Medway she is expected to be accompanied by a flotilla of small boats and well-wishers on the dockside..

A spokesman for the Medway Queen Preservation Trust said: " The fitting out phase of Medway Queen’s restoration will take place at Gillingham Pier but funds are now in extremely short supply and progress will be very slow unless we are successful in raising significant amounts of money.

"Our current priorities are providing safe access to the vessel for workers and visitors, restoring the aft saloon to enable it to be used for functions to generate revenue towards the restoration and restoring the engine room and machinery to working order as an attraction to encourage visitors."

The trust is also seeking volunteers to be involved in the completion of the project. (Contact number is 01634 575717)

More at the Medway Queen website HERE

Watch video of her leaving the dock

 

Read our earlier feature on Medway Queen HERE

Story updated Nov 4th 2013

 
     
 
 
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HISTORIC PADDLE STEAMER SET FOR RETURN

EARLIER FEATURE
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MEDWAY QUEEN


 
 
       
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