Secret Scotland

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MV Balmoral Fund appeal 2013

At the tail end of 2012, Waverley Excursions Ltd  – which operates both the paddle steamer Waverley and MV Balmoral – announce that Balmoral would not be sailing during the 2013 season.

In a letter to Waverley and Balmoral stakeholders, Kathleen O’Neill, chief executive of Waverley Excursions Ltd, said:

Balmoral’s operation has been hampered increasingly in recent years by extreme weather conditions. This has led to many cancelled or disrupted sailings, which has had a significant impact on that ship’s contribution to operating results. Waverley’s timetable is less susceptible to such disruptions.

Clearly, we are unable to predict the weather for 2013, but none of the forecasters is predicting a significant improvement over recent years. After taking a wide range of considerations into account, we have decided, reluctantly, that it would be too great a risk to operate Balmoral next year and that doing so would increase the threat to the future of both ships.

Via Waverley fleetmate ‘won’t sail in 2013’ – Local Headlines – The Buteman

Balmoral was built in 1949, near Southampton, and is being looked after on a care and maintenance basis during 2013 by volunteers in Bristol.

Appeal web site

In order to return to her job of providing pleasure cruises in 2014, some £350,000 is needed to fund essential survey and refit work.

Those concerned have raised further fears. Since there are few vessels using their facilities, there are concerns that if Balmoral does not return to service in 2014, then pier owners will have little incentive to maintain them, and if they and Balmoral lose their certification,  the chances this ever being restored could be slim.

An appeal web site has been set up, with further information and donation details:

MV Balmoral Fund Ltd



June 21, 2013 - Posted by | Appeal, Maritime, Transport |

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