In preparation for her 40th season in preservation, Waverley was towed from Glasgow to Greenock for her annual underwater survey. During her two week stay in dry dock the hull will be blasted with high-pressure water to remove the layers of old paint, inspected and repainted with anti-fouling paint. This will not only reduce overall weight but is expected to further improve fuel efficiency.
Friday 17th April 2015, just after 7am. Waverley rests under a fickle clear blue sky at her Pacific Quay berth. Notice that the rescue boats have been removed for overhaul and that both deck shelters are in process of being stripped for repainting.Roy Tait
With her steering engine undergoing maintenance Waverley was to be towed down river to Greenock. Battler stands off the bow as Biter arrives to take up station on the stern.Roy Tait
And they’re off! The Clyde Marine tugs sandwich Waverley at the start of their three hour journey to ‘the Garvel’.Roy Tait
Sailing down the Clyde. Note the absence of a red ensign and capstan. The capstan is away being overhauled by BAE Systems Apprentices. The yellow crane at the former Barclay Curle engine works is one of only three Arrol & Co. Titan cantilever cranes that remain on the Clyde. None are operational.Roy Tait
Arrival at Greenock. Biter has just turned around whilst Battler leads the trio towards the mouth of the dock.Roy Tait
Battler dragging a dead ship.Roy Tait
Approaching Garvel dry dock, now operated by Dales Marine Services. One of the dock gates can be seen flush with the dock wall. Roy Tait
Apprentices from Glasgow City Builders have removed the scumbling from the rear deck shelter. The bare aluminium has not been seen since the year 2000 when the shelter was fabricated during the first phase of the Millennium Rebuild.Roy Tait
Battler eases Waverley in to the mouth of the dock.Roy Tait
The distinctive red, white and black funnels viewed from the James Watt Dock. To the right a vessel that entered Garvel a month ago as the Caledonian MacBrayne MV Saturn re-emerging as Pentland Ferries Orcadia.Roy Tait
Using only lines and windlass, Waverley manoeuvres in to the dock under her own power. Just visible in front of her bow is an orange marker. This indicates the required location of her bow, thus ensuring that she settles correctly on to the blocks when the 650 foot long dock is pumped out. The dock foundation stone was laid on 6th July 1871 and construction completed six years later at a total cost of £80,000. The dock is lined with Dalbeattie granite.Roy Tait
Dock gates closed. This year Waverley is to be the only occupant. By coincidence, her docking partner from last year, SD Moorfowl, had just vacated the dock an hour earlier.Roy Tait
Perfect! The bow nestles up to the marker, allowing pumping to begin. Two hours later, with the dock partially drained and the blocks not yet revealed, the author had to return to work. So sadly no pictures of a ‘dry’ dry dock.Roy Tait
One Week On
Sunday 26th April and half-way through Waverley’s two week stay.Roy Tait
The Society is a company limited by guarantee (having no share capital), registered in England and Wales No. 2167853, and a charity registered in England and Wales (298328) and in Scotland (SC037603). Registered Office Mayfield, Hoe Lane, Abinger Hammer, Dorking, Surrey, RH5 6RS. The Society is governed by its Articles of Association which set out its objects which may be summarised as to preserve in operation paddle steamers, to educate the public in their historical significance and to preserve relics and other materials associated with paddle steamers.
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