There’s a rather sad piece about the sb British Empire on a website called “Sniffy’s Righting”.
The writer describes a visit to Battlesbridge some 15 years ago when a group was hoping to restore the barge. At the time, the piece says, it was possible to walk with care on the deck despite some rotting timbers. The project didn’t come to anything but did make the writer very interested in Thames sailing barges, and living near Maldon there was plenty of opportunity to see them.
Recently “Sniffy” has returned to Battlesbridge and was shocked and saddened to see the British Empire’s present condition. Timbers are rotten and broken, and she is being used as a rubbish dump. A tragic end indeed for a famous name.
Here’s the link to the story.
And here’s a close up showing the state of the barge.