Restoration work on historic Clyde steamer set to begin

A £1m contract to repair the 90-year-old TS Queen Mary has been awarded to Marine Projects Scotland.

Restoration work on historic TS Queen Mary steamer set to begin at Govan docks Friends of TS Queen Mary

Work on a historic Clyde steamship, which once carried passengers including the Queen Mother and King George V, is set to begin.

A £1m contract to repair the 90-year-old TS Queen Mary has been awarded to Marine Projects Scotland.

On Friday, the vessel was moved from its current berth at Glasgow Science Centre to Govan Graving Docks – the first to be berthed at the facility in almost 40 years.

The year-long project will create employment opportunities for up to 12 people in the Govan area.

After building a 3D laser map scan of the ship’s structure, experts will remove the two funnels and wheelhouse and completely rebuild them.

Windows, the team boat and promenade decks will all be removed and replaced as part of the renovation.

In its heyday, the vessel, built at Dumbarton in 1933, carried 13,000 passengers each week and was known as “Britain’s Finest Pleasure Steamer”.

Royal passengers included then-princesses Elizabeth and Margaret, while other famous people to step aboard included then US first lady Eleanor Roosevelt, Viscount Montgomery of Alamein and music hall legend Sir Harry Lauder.

In 1996, it was listed on the United Kingdom’s official historical ships register and is now the last of its kind in the world.

Charity Friends of the TS Queen Mary hope the ship can be brought back into active service once the restoration is complete.

Iain Sim, chairman of the group, said: “The trustees are delighted that this major contract will commence in TS Queen Mary’s 90th anniversary year. It will be truly transformative for this vital part of our maritime heritage.

“This major structural work will help breathe new life into TS Queen Mary and ensure she will be in the best possible condition for years to come.”

Peter Breslin, managing director of Marine Projects Scotland Ltd said: “It is a tremendous honour to be awarded the TS Queen Mary restoration contract.

In the coming year, we will devote ourselves tirelessly to safeguarding, protecting and reviving this exquisite and historically significant vessel.

“Securing this contract is testament to our commitment and confidence in the business viability of Govan Drydock. As a fully operational ship repair and maintenance facility, it has the capacity to generate employment opportunities and contribution to the ongoing reinvigoration of the Clyde waterfront.”

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