Idle Duck is back on the water and looking good, as these photos from a week and a half ago show.
The bawley-derived Maurice Griffiths-designed boat (use the search to find posts about both Idle Duck and Scoter) has been now in the hands of my friend Bob Telford for a couple of years now, and after a couple of seasons’ hard work repairing decks and bulwarks at Alan Staley’s yard at Faversham, she’s looking very smart in her fresh paint.
The view from Idle Duck’s cockpit
Jan Carpenter has written in to ask for information about this local wreck. Does anyone have any answers for him please?
‘Hi all, looking for any info about what’s said to be a Thames barge named the George Murray, which is now a wreck lying in Forder Lake just off the River Lynher in Cornwall. However, I’m thinking that it may not be a Thames barge.
‘There have been several hypothesis for this wreck and several different names have suggested, but the locals seem to remember her as the George Murray. However I suspect she wasn’t a Thames barge because I cannot find any trace of a barge called George Murray anywhere! I was hoping your website may jog a few memories or direct me to somewhere I can find lists of vessels I have not yet come across…’
‘Kind regards, Jan
‘PS I have had three 40ft larch logs delivered for the planking of Scoter and a fine selection of oak knees!’
I should explain that Jan is the new owner of the important Maurice Griffiths-designed Scoter, and that his postscript is great news for anyone interested in seeing her afloat once again.
As for the George Murray – from the look of her she certainly could be a Thames barge, and given the thousands that used to work in the Thames, I’d guess there could easily have been some about which there’s little documentary evidence left today. Would the PLA’s archives include some information, I wonder?
For more on Scoter, click here and scroll down!
Doug Grierson has sent in some more old photographs that will no doubt delight the large numbers of people who have been following the Scoter story. Thanks Doug!
For more on this famous old bawley-derived yacht that was so admired by Maurice Griffiths and which passed through a long line of owners including artist Colin Grierson and son Doug, click here.
The first image is from a postcard sent by an earlier owner of Scoter to a recipient in Essex in 1907; Doug doesn’t know how or when it was passed to his mother.
The two photos of Scoter from 1994-5 at Woodbridge and Maldon show later coach roof and original windlass and circular fore-hatch; the final item is a scanned image of a water-colour by Colin Grierson dated 1932 showing the rig she had when he bought her in late 1930.