Waterways of the Humber

Waterways of the Humber

Monday, 4 June 2012

Congratulations Wheldale

Wheldale on her home mooring at the
Yorkshire Waterways Museum in Goole.
Waiting to be spruced up for the Queen.

Well done Wheldale.  This little, but tough, tug left her home at the Yorkshire Waterways Museum, at Goole on the Aire & Calder Canal, on Sunday 27th May  -  to make her way to London to take part in the Jubilee Pageant on the Thames.

She was specifically designed for canal work only.  Her job was to bring long chains of tubs, full of coal, from the collieries of South and West Yorkshire to ships in Goole docks  -  as part of the “Tom Puddings” system.  Nothing ever said she would leave her home canal, go down the River Ouse, into the Humber, out into the North Sea, a long way down the east coast, and up the Thames.  But she did.

On TV we saw Wheldale in London’s West India Dock, which was the holding berth for boats coming from seaward.  Then during the pageant she was one of the very few with a BBC person on board, and it was delightful to see two of her crew being interviewed live to the world.  They managed to explain about Wheldale’s past, and the tom-puddings. (One of too few informed comments about a boat during the whole of the BBC's coverage).

Wheldale waited in London for a weather-window to come back home to the Waterways of the Humber.  Which she safely did.

Congratulations to all involved.

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