Paddle Steamer Waverley has returned to passenger service following her Boiler Refit which was delayed during the lockdown. The much-admired iconic vessel departed Glasgow on Saturday morning for her first trip of the season with flags adorned.
Waverley’s General Manager, Paul Semple, commented “We are delighted that Waverley is back in-service operating on the Clyde and carrying passengers. We are grateful to all those who supported our Boiler Refit Appeal in 2019 and helped ensure that Waverley lives on. Since we opened bookings just four ago demand for tickets has been high with several sailings now sold out. Waverley has a loyal customer base and we know many are keen to step aboard the rejuvenated steamship.”
Waverley’s reboilering started in mid-January following the successful appeal in 2019 which raised £2.3m in just 7 months. The refit project has seen new boilers and electrical systems installed with other areas of the vessel refurbished. A revised sailing programme will be in operation due to ongoing Covid-19 restrictions with a reduced number of calling points, reduced capacity, and increased time to board and disembark passengers. Waverley will operate on the Clyde until Sunday 6th September.
Mr Semple further commented, “With the length of Waverley’s sailing season being reduced from five months to just over two weeks due to Covid-19, this will present a funding challenge as we try to cover the costs associated with the coming winter period. We are now opening an Emergency Appeal to seek donations to ensure Waverley can survive beyond Covid-19.”
Donations can be made online at waverleyexcursions.co.uk or by texting STEAM followed by your chosen amount £10 or £20 to 70085.