This weekend saw the Society taking part in this interesting 2 day event.
A visit and chat with the JCC on a lovely sunny day
PPE 1970s style- wellies, a wooly jumper and hat.
Jean’s brother- and his son, Liam- came to visit. They had the official tour and, they were very impressed ! We also had a visit from an ex-explorer scientist, Donald Ballance. He worked in the Hydrographic lab, and this was his first return to the ship in 46 years!
Joeri- whom we first met at Custom House Open Day managed to come and see us in action. He joined the society and we look forward to his return. The Browns, Doris, Giles and Martin of Aqualis, Aberdeen visited by request- having a professional interest in maritime engineering. Doris seemed interested too- I hope. We would like to thank them for joining the society and taking interest in the future of the Explorer.
Liz Hare and photographer being shown John Dunn’s guide book. We are hoping the play will be staged sometime in June.
The SS Explorer boasts a a directional valve of very similar proportions to one that the Maid requires replacing. We have shown- and are lending them our own valve. Ruth will fabricate the pattern for the new part. We got a donation of a ship’s clock- in need of some TLC. It requires a new internal mechanism, a new face- and some serious cleaning. Colin is on the case- and once completed- it will take it’s place in the Officers Saloon.
Thanks to Phil Harley for sourcing us this Redifon R50M Broadcast Receiver – 1951 vintage. We can’t thank you enough, Phil!
Bernard Thain- one of the Explorers erstwhile scientists- and Liz Hare- who was collecting Bernard’s recollections of working onboard for the Citadel Arts Group drama project. Andy and Eric Holmes- our newest recruit. Welcome onboard!
The Port and Starboard walkways completed with hi-tech non-slip finish. Chicken wire!
Today a Captain of 41 years tenure visited the SS Explorer. David shared many stories of his life at sea, working with the Scottish Fisheries Protection Agency. He was very pleased to see an ex-Fisheries Research Vessel being well cared for while awaiting restoration. His book- Water Under the Keel was published in 2013. An autobiography of his life at sea. He really knows how tell the stories!
The Christmas bun-fight took place onboard, today- 18th December. It would have been more of a bunfight had the oven co-operated- but at least there was enough to go round. Happy Xmas to all!
On Thursday, The Citadel Theatre Group- Leith came to glean information and old seamans stories for their planned drama about the history of the explorer. Today- Tuesday 11th December- John Teasdale – one of our directors- visited onboard for a tour with his delightful family. Pleasure to see them all.
Great to see the Monkey Island shelter progressing- the monkeys are thrilled! The gift of planking we got recently has magically become a Port side Walkway- meaning no more Torvill and Dean impressions! 🙂 The tourist trail is that little bit safer.
Today our planned visit from our young model maker took place. However before the party arrived, a gentleman came to the ship and introduced himself as Bernard- one of the scientists who worked onboard in the 1960s. He was given a tour of memory lane- and told many excellent stories- including a fateful day in 1962, when the crew were assembled in the saloon to listen to president John F Kennedy statement on the Cuban Missile Crisis! Our young model maker arrived, model in hand, with his family. He was given a tour and finished their visit with tea and sandwiches. He was presented with mementos of his visit. As the day ended, we had an unexpected gift in the form of more scaffolding planks to create a safe walkway on the port side.
This afternoon Andy and Jim went along to take to delivery of the radio- which had actually arrived fairly early this morning! Fortunately no-one had half-inched it, and it hadn’t rained. Safely stowed now onboard. On their way home- they called in at The Fingal(below)-Leith’s latest boutique hotel- and spoke with some staff. Andy was admiring the lovely, pristine mooring ropes. He told them about the marvellous SS Explorer – and invited them along for a visit, when they have time.
We hope they’ll join us anyway. 🙂
Saturday 6th September, Ben and Hamish from Wessex Archaeolgy visited to gather information further to their stabilisation plan for the Explorer. LET THERE BE LIGHT -at the foot of the stairs.
Customs House in Leith gave us a stall for Open Doors Day. It was a blustery, rather coolish day in general, and visitors were reduced on last years numbers. Even the Saturday Market was quiet. Nonetheless the people who did attend were enthusiastic. One vistors father used to work onboard- and anothers father spliced ropes for vessels in the dock.
A fabulous picture taken by Magnus Hagdorn in his speciality style! It looks fantastic- worthy of the SS.Enterprise.
Some terrific pictures fron Stuart Brown of The LoFi camera club. Space doesn’t allow all of them- but here are some received today- thank you Stuart. A couple of outside pictures from a new perspective. A dramatic look at the Bridge And below- a rather spooky shot of an apparent ghostie in the alleyway……
No coincidence this storm was named after two of the greatest boxers ever! It knocked ten bells out of the gangway. The vessel is accessible by the boat deck gangway and entering through the bridge- with great care, of course. Making it steady again is our highest priority right now. Watch this space! UPDATE -SATURDAY 22ND SEPT 2018 A good days work by Duncan and Jim! Before—- After———
A visit was requested by a daring group of 4 fellows from Durham, who discovered on the internet that visiting the SS Explorer was a recommended activity when visiting Leith. Could not agree more. Despite our usual gangway being mangled by hurricane Ali – Peter, Morris, Ken and Graham all managed to board via the boat-deck gangway, and enter through the bridge. A very pleasant tour party- and all left with leaflets and application forms.
Today we were visited by The Citadel Arts Group. A leith community group who have previously written and performed a play about Scottish whalers. They are now interested in writing a play about the SS Explorer.
One of our members, Dave Arrowsmith, is a member of a Camera Club. As a subject worthy of recording for posterity, they requested a visit to the SS Explorer to take a photie! A lot of photies, actually. Coincidentally, a photographer, Magnus, who has visited our ship in past and taken pictures, requested another visit to take some speciality pictures in the engine room. The mess room was standing room only- but worth the crush for coffee and cake!
Alistair R White joined the SS Exlorer Society recently. Today, he came along to see what all the fuss is about- and thoroughly enjoyed a guided tour.
While lunch was served, the chat and anecdotes of our vistors really brought the saloon back to life!
Some new faces came to see us, but one of those faces had his own bunk here when his father was Captain. Andy, and his lovely wife Amanda, came to see Andy’s old stomping ground when he was a little younger. He sailed with his dad and had his own bunk- which he reclaimed! The Bridge hasn’t changed much- probably cleaner now. A jolly good day was had- and Andy had some great stories to tell us. Another Andrew brought along David, who spent his working life at sea and was delighted to visit the Explorer. Our regular friend, Ben MacPherson, brought his brother-in-law, David to the vessel. Another happy chappie after his tour. And finally- the banners for Saturday’s visit of the Leith Model Boat club were rolled out.
Derek has completed the saloon skylight- No more rain ingress. Yes! -And some more painting of the alleyway was done. No lights for a photo as the generator stopped working- but here is the evidence m’lud.
A cupboard was cleaned and set up by Jean- and is now open and ready for business! A thing of beauty…………
After our enjoyable vist from the Forth Ports Management Team, our Chairman, Andy, attends the naming ceremony of the Forth Ports Tug (The Craigleith) and pilot vessel (The Forth Puma).
Some continental visitors sought out our increasingly famous project. All the way from Switzerland!
Well, volunteer painters from Victoria Quay Offices Having worked up a hearty appetite after much painting- lunch was served in the officers saloon.
Just another quiet Tuesday in Edinburgh Dock.
A very smart workshop- love that bench! Mr Chippendale would be proud. As you can see, if all else fails hit it with a hammer.
A good time was had by all.
Derek doing a sterling job on the saloon skylight.
Post AGM tour of SS Explorer.