Don't miss a story sign up to Exmouth Journal's FREE daily newsletter CLICK HERE

Community helps out with barge restoration

09:00 20 January 2013

The Thames Barge Vigilant, which is currently being restored at Topsham Quay.

The Thames Barge Vigilant, which is currently being restored at Topsham Quay.

Archant

Restoration work on the Thames barge moored in Topsham Quay is now well under way, with members of the community pitching in to help out.

Vigilant was rotting in a boat yard in Essex before it was bought by Benjamin Squirrell.

His friend, Topsham boat builder Dave McCabe, then visited the boat to carry out enough repairs for it to be brought back to Topsham late last year.

Now it is safely moored at the Quay, work has begun on stripping wood from the side of the barge.

Dave said: “An elderly lady had lived in it for about 14 years … and since then nothing was done to it and it started rotting in fresh water.

“We repaired the bottom in Essex, and the rudder was redone to get her back. Now we’re removing the outer planks to expose the frames, taking any out which are bad or rotten and replacing the frames with oak.

“It looks like a mess, but in real terms everything’s here to make it work. We hope that in about a year and a half we’ll be up and running – we won’t be here for years and years.”

During its time in Topsham, the boat has attracted many interested spectators, and some of these have volunteered to help out with the restoration.

Dave said: “We want people to see what we’re doing. Everyone’s interested in it and instead of making it closed off, we want everybody to join in.”

One of the volunteers helping to strip down the barge is Tony Cooper.

He said: “I think [my interest is] basically because it’s history, and you have to maintain it and restore it and show it to the next generation.

“I’m a retired headteacher so my interest is in the education side of things. We can’t get kids down here at the moment, but if people don’t do it we’ll never have it, and kids won’t know about these types of barges.”

To find out more about Vigilant, or to volunteer to help, email info@vigilantbarge.com.

0 comments

Other News Stories

12:57
Trish Leake before her charity headshave on Saturday. Trish was raising money for Macmillan Cancer Support while she was sending her long locks to the Little Princess Trust. Ref exe 30-16SH 3069. Picture: Simon Horn.

Head shave for charity

Read more
12:30
Rose Lodge care home on Isca Road have received an outstanding CQC report. Manager Karen Bousher is pictured with colleagues and residents this week. Ref exe 29-16SH 2386. Picture: Simon Horn.

A double celebration for a Littleham dementia care community has been seven years in the making, according to its owner.

Read more
06:30
Sir Admiral Mark Stanhope visits Tony Griffin of the Exmouth Sea Cadets to see how the new build is progressing. Ref exe 06-16AW 8741. Picture: Alex Walton

Community groups can benefit from an invitation by Exmouth Sea Cadets to use its new clubhouse.

Read more
Yesterday, 17:16

Daniel Cresswell, aged 29, of Armytage Road, Budleigh Salterton, admitted causing actual bodily harm and was jailed for five months, suspended for two years by Recorder Mr Paul Dunkels, QC.

Read more
Yesterday, 12:30
St. Peter's Primary School pupils had a go at making healthy barbecue Kebabs. Ryan, Gareth, Miia and Emily team up to create some tasty kebabs.  Ref exb 28-16AW 2882. Picture: Alex Walton

A healthy eating week, which culminated in a barbecue, has contributed towards children eating more lunchtime vegetables.

Read more
Yesterday, 11:03

A Judge who branded a man armed with a knife during a row in Exmouth a ‘thorough nuisance’, has recommended drug and drink support to stop him reoffending

Read more
Yesterday, 09:35
The annual Race for Life challenge at Westpoint

The organisers of a Race for Life event held in Exeter at the weekend have hailed the annual challenge a success.

Read more
Yesterday, 06:30
Sarka Andersonova (left) of Carousel Childcare in Budleigh with some of the children. Ref exb 20-16TI 1155. Picture: Terry Ife

Budleigh Salterton parents face a race against time to save the town’s early years child care provider from leaving the town.

Read more
Sunday, July 24, 2016
Bassetts Farm School

Youngsters at four primary schools in Exmouth have had a donation of footballs from a town club.

Read more
Sunday, July 24, 2016

Fairy magic caught the imagination of youngsters as they searched around a trail for miniature doors hidden around Phear Park.

Read more

Local Weather

Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 20°C

min temp: 16°C

Most Read News

Great British Life

Great British Life

Useful Links

Advertise in the Paper
Submit a Story
Subscriptions Order
Competitions
Photo Orders
Family notices
iwitness24
Google Plus
Facebook
Twitter
Reader Travel

Family Notices 24

Read Online

Image
Read the Exmouth Journal e-edition E-edition

Newsletter Sign Up

Local business directory

Exmouth's trusted business finder

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists


Find planning applications