Blog > Restoration

Freshspring receives her wheelhouse

Posted on 16/04/2018 by Stephen Attenborough

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On Monday 16th April 2018 many months of work, as part of a project supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, Bideford Bridge Trust, Torridge District Council, Headly Trust and Balsdon Trust, saw SS Freshspring receive her timber wheelhouse. The wheelhouse still requires final fitting and fitting out, but vastly improves the looks of the ship once again…

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A new banner

Posted on 13/08/2017 by Stephen Attenborough

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With the reasonably dry weather we have been having over the past few days, volunteers on board have been able to make some good progress with painting on the out side of Freshspring. Up top, the funnel has had it's first coat of buff gloss. Meanwhile on deck, in the scuppers where water sometimes sits, is getting a quick coat of red paint to prevent…

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Any colour as long as it’s buff (or black)?

Posted on 07/03/2017 by Stephen Attenborough

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Over the weekend volunteers have been busy, as ever, this time working inside the forecastle (focle) scraping off the loose paint from the ceiling and from around the inside of the bow after welding on the outside has damaged the paint. As we do not have any colour photos of the inside of the ship, we do not know what colour she was painted inside during…

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Easing our way into 2017

Posted on 01/02/2017 by Stephen Attenborough

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Easing our way into the New Year, volunteers on board made the most of the dry weather we had during much of January to crack on with chipping and painting of the bulwarks and engine room superstructure. It's only in primer at the moment, but once the weather dries up again we'll get a top coat of buff on her. With the weather latterly turning…

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Wheelhouse banners

Posted on 19/12/2016 by Stephen Attenborough

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A set of banners to go around the wheelhouse of Freshspring were delivered today and we just couldn't wait to see them up, so we have spent the afternoon fitting two of them. A vast improvement I hope you'll agree.

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Hull steelworks progressing well

Posted on 30/08/2016 by Stephen Attenborough

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The steelworkers have been busy on Freshspring for over two weeks now and are making good progress, working from the bow to aft. There are currently three teams working, two are positioning and tacking on the plates, with the last building up the seam welds. Rather than craning the plates into place, hooks are welded onto the hull and chain blocks are…

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Priming the hull

Posted on 16/08/2016 by Stephen Attenborough

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The ship has received a fresh look over the weekend as contractors gave the hull a quick wash off before applying the first coat of paint to the bottom for probably nearly forty years. This paint is a 'holding' primer to slow down rust while the steelworks take place, but can be welded through, so there is no need for the steelwork contracotrs…

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Hull cleaning works

Posted on 14/08/2016 by Stephen Attenborough

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The day following settling onto the blocks saw, after a gangway was lowered into place by the shipyard, the hull blasting start. The object of this exercise is to clean off all paint, scale and rust from the hull so we can get a much better idea of the condition of the hull plating. The hull blasting process only uses ultra-high pressure water (30,000psi)…

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Down onto the blocks

Posted on 03/08/2016 by Stephen Attenborough

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On Sunday 31st July 2016, Freshspring was moved from her holding berth where she has been waiting since the tow from Newnham and into the drydock at Sharpness. Once tied up alongside, the shipyard spent some time getting Freshspring on a more even keel. She usually lists to starboard, probably due to the fuel oil pumping equipment in the boiler room,…

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Tow to Sharpness, the start of hull works

Posted on 09/07/2016 by Stephen Attenborough

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On the morning of Wednesday 6th July, Freshspring was towed along the river Severn in Gloucestershire from Newnham-on-Severn to Sharpness, the first time she has moved any distance for over 20 years, marking the start of works enabling Freshspring to be saved and be moved to a public location in the North Devon town of Bideford. A fabulous and very…

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