Category Archives: Thames Sailing Barge Trust
Thames Sailing Barge Trust has asked for our help in finding information about and photographs of William (Bill) Watson. Here are the details:-
“Information Required – Can You Help? especially old London & Rochester Bargemen.
“The Thames Sailing Barge Trust is researching the life of William Watson who was skipper of sailing barge Pudge between January 1923 and December 1949, when it is believed he retired. He also took Pudge to Dunkirk.
“Bill Watson was born in Barling, but lived much of his life around Strood and Rochester working for the London & Rochester Barge Co. Ltd.
“At long last it has been discovered that Bill died on the 20th April 1964 at the age of 83. He was living on a houseboat called the Sinbad, which was moored by Canal Road, Strood.
“The Trust has only one photograph of him and is keen to find more.
“Any stories about his life, and in particular if anyone knew him between 1949 when he retired and his death in 1964, would be welcome, as would information about his boat Sinbad. The Trust has come across the name of Peter Joseph Davis who may have known him before he died. If anyone can help with information on this person, it would be appreciated.
If you can help in any way, please email John Rayment at firstname.lastname@example.org. THANK YOU”
Time to pack up at the end of a cold and tiring day. It was TSBT’s Open Day at Maldon Hythe Quay yesterday.
Large number of visitors enjoyed tea and home-made cakes on board sb Centaur and were no doubt pleased to sit down out of the wind for a while with a warming cuppa. Wonderful TSBT volunteers were showing adults, children and dogs round the barge. Funny to see little dogs with short legs not liking the steep slope up to the deck at high tide. Several stopped half way and didn’t want to move.
TSBT generously invited SSBR to have a table in their tent on the Quay. Don Wright and I talked to lots of visitors and acted as a Scooter Park for all the children, but sadly did not sell a single book! Still at least we were there showing the SSBR banner.
Sb Thistle went out for an afternoon sail to Osea. Here she is nearly home.
There’s a special event coming up in Maldon that really shouldn’t be missed.
The Thames Sailing Barge Trust and the Society for Sailing Barge Research are holding an Archive Thames Sailing Barge Film Evening on Saturday 11th March at Maldon Town Hall, Market Hill, Maldon.
Some of the films will not have been shown before.
The event is to raise funds for the SSBR and Thames Sailing Barge Trust. Tickets are available in advance and cost £7.00 per person. On the evening they can be purchased for £8.00.
Doors open at 7:00 pm and the film show starts at 7:30 pm. There will be a real ale bar and teas and coffee. We will also hold a raffle.
To obtain tickets visit the Maldon Tourist Information Office, Wenlock Way, Maldon, or they can be obtained by post by sending a cheque payable to Thames Sailing Barge Trust and a self addressed envelope to: John Rayment, 12 Wisdoms Green, Coggeshall, Colchester. Essex CO6 1SG.
Thank you for your support
We’ve already posted about the Film Premiere on Saturday 7th March at Maldon Town Hall. What film? The premiere of Simon North’s film of the Restoration of Centaur. Scroll down the page to see the poster for the performance giving all details of the Premiere which is in aid of the Thames Sailing Barge Trust.
Now Simon has produced three trailers for the film show, and, having seen them, each of them is a beautiful piece of art in its own right. Here are the three trailers, the first introducing the film:
the second when the Lottery grant was awarded:
and the third showing Tim Goldsack, the Master Shipwright, at work with tar and horse manure:
Now go along to Maldon Town Hall on 7th March and see the whole thing – Enjoy!
There’s a good article in The Daily Telegraph about Thames barges. Written by Adam Lusher, it describes his joining the crew of Centaur for the 2013 Pin Mill Match.
Adam was clearly smitten by the barges:-
“As the red ochre sails clustered around the mouth of the Orwell, it was as if the river had returned to the days when the Thames sailing barge was the East Coast’s cargo vessel of choice, not the giant container vessels that now unload at Felixstowe, more maritime tower blocks than ships. It felt all the more dreamlike because it had seemed so improbable.”
He joined Mate, Chris Martin, on a winch but not for long:-
“…….paying crew members can choose their own activity level. Those who wish can take a turn at the winch. The seriously enthusiastic can train to be mates and skippers. Others, however, prefer to help cook lunch or simply to admire the view.
“I strongly recommend the latter. When your smiling crewmate offers you a winch handle, remember that the leeboards both weigh 1.5 muscle-sapping tons. I lasted precisely one tack, before I gasped my excuses and abandoned my station.”
Here’s Adam taking a turn on the winch with mate, Chris Martin.
We would just point out to Adam, though, that tremendous as TSBT’s work with Centaur and Pudge is, there are other Trusts working hard to preserve individual barges, several of them now proudly sailing as members of the active fleet.
Here’s the link to the full story. Well worth a read.
Why not visit them at Maldon Quay and have a guided tour of their two Thames Barges, Pudge and Centaur.
Admission is free, but donations will be gratefully received to help keep the barges sailing.
Monday 6th May – There will be shanty singers performing on board throughout the day. Barges open from 10.30am.
There will be displays showing the work of the Thames Sailing Barge Trust on board and refreshments will be available.
The Trust looks forward to welcoming you aboard.