Saturday, 29 August 2015

Nancy Belle Beached

The removal of Shamrock's slipways rails has resulted in the slipway being a lot more usable and as the river Tamar has been in full flood, due to a period of unseasonal heavy rain, Nancy Belle has been beached at the top of the slipway to get her out of the river and away from all the driftwood (Tamar crocodiles). The time on the slipway has not been wasted as she has had a bit of a clean up, a new battery and the fitting of a non return valve in her exhaust system, not that she is ever likely be taken out in conditions when this would be needed.

High and dry.

Friday, 14 August 2015

Shamrock Day

A successful Shamrock Day on Sunday had a combination of dry weather and an afternoon tide resulting in the star attraction being afloat, all the right ingredients for inviting visitors to explore her, discover her history and plans for the future. Due to squally winds, plans to set and strike Shamrocks sails had to be dropped. Other attractions included ‘Smite’, a skittle like game played on grass, a display of model boats by the City of Plymouth Model Boat Club, and information on the river Tamar from the West Country River Trust. There was also ‘Get Knotted’, a chance to learn and practice you knots, Treasure Map and lots more spread over the quay and boat shed. On the river the Cotehele Quay Gig Club was giving taster rowing sessions and there was even the sighting of an odd radio controlled model boat.

A rare quiet moment.
City of Plymouth Model Boat Club.
Torpedo boat spotted off Cotehele Quay!

Nancy Belle

Nancy Belle has had her seaworthiness inspection that turned out to be a bit more than expected. She was first checked structurally and mechanically on the slipway, then after being launched back into the river came the unexpected load and stability checks. Plastic dustbins full of water were used for most of the load with crew members making up the rest and also acting as a moving load to check her stability. The crew is happy to report that despite being sixty plus years old she passed all the checks with flying colours, well done Shaune.

Preparing for the load test.


A lot of visitors to the National Trusts Cotehele Quay only ever see Shamrock sat on the mud and here is the answer to one of the most common questions 'does she ever float'?

Friday, 7 August 2015

Maintanance Delayed

The opening up of Shamrock to visitors during the weekdays has proved very popular and has helped to increase her profile but has had the knock on effect of reducing the time available to maintain her during the current peak visitor period. Any jobs undertaken need to be completed before eleven o’clock as, after that, any time spent onboard is taken up answering visitors questions. This week has seen any spare time available being used to haul Nancy Belle out onto the boat shed slipway. This enabled the chance to give her a good scrub down, mainly to remove seagull droppings, but also check everything is in working order. Once she is back on her river mooring the crew plan to rig some flags to try and discourage the seagulls.

Shamrock from the boat shed window.

Nancy Belle after her wash and brush up.

Shamrock Day Sunday 9th

Plans for Sundays Shamrock Day (9th August) are starting to come together and it is even rumoured that, if the weather forecast of light winds is correct, there will be demonstrations of raising and lowering her sails using visitors (willing not pressed) as the manpower.

Getting ready for the weekend.