Historic King’s Lynn fishing boat will soon be shipshape

Chris Ward restoring historic fishing boat the Baden Powell. Chris Ward restoring historic fishing boat the Baden Powell.

Friday, April 18, 2014
9:51 AM

Volunteers restoring the cockler Baden Powell say they are on track to bring her home later this year or early in 2015.

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The boat, built in 1900 by Lynn boatbuilders the Worfolks, is being repaired in a barn at Terrington.

Project leaders will be giving a presentation on their progress and their plans for the boat later this month.

Every Wednesday a team of volunteers from the King’s Lynn Worfolk Boat Trust, with occasional guidance from skilled professionals, gets down to the business of replacing worn timbers with fresh wood from many sources in and around King’s Lynn.

They expect the hull will be ready to have new planks fitted within weeks. New larch of the right dimensions is on site, ready to be trimmed to size to replace those planks which are no longer fit for purpose.

Once the vessel is watertight, the trust hopes to bring her into the lower Purfleet, by the Custom House.

Remaining restoration work, including deck fittings, mast, rigging, sails and seating for passengers among many other items – will continue to be carried out by the volunteers once she is in her new home.

Ken Hill from the trust said: “All that will take time. But it is hoped she can take her first 12 passengers out into the river next year, to get a panoramic view of the town and begin her new career as a sailing classroom.

“She will be used to show people how fishing and maritime traditions have been at the heart of King’s Lynn history for centuries, and have played a huge part in the development of the town.”

Baden Powell was a double-ender, with a bow at either end. She was designed to beach on sandbanks in The Wash, so her crew could jump over the side and rake up cockles.

The presentation will be given by Tim Clayton and Ken Hill, from the King’s Lynn Worfolk Boat Trust, at Marriott’s Warehouse on Sunday, April 27 at 3pm with free admission.

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