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The Waverley

I took a wee trip on the old paddle steamer last week.

I only had the wee camera with me but this wasn’t a bad shot with the Cumbraes, Arran and Bute in the background.

And if Colin the piper is reading, put down your coffee. This is the scene as we arrived at Greenock:


The Grand Old Lady

It’s one of the defining sights of the Clyde Firth and Estuary. Every time I see the Waverley paddle steamer my inner wee boy jumps up and down and exclaims “There’s the Waverley!”

I caught this shot after spotting her as I drove along Helensburgh seafront the other day.

Click on the photo for a better view.

The Waverley

We passed the Waverley on the way back last night but I only had my phone for photos and didn’t get a good one.

How about this shot of the old lady passing Dumbarton Rock?

Paddle Power

BLFP correspondent and friend Sonsdiary took this magnificent photo of the Waverley this morning:

Sonsdiary’s Blipfoto site is HERE


It’s taken him (them) over a week but AnElephantCant have come up with this ditty about our sail doon the watter, into the deep grey yonder of Loch Long, on the Waverley, and how we sought refreshment and shelter in one of the bars.

AnElephantCant claim he’s a sailor
He doesn’t handle deep water too bravely
He is not keen on boats
Or anything that floats
But he loves a trip with his chums on The Waverley

He is not built for most modes of transport
Not being what you’d call streamlined
He does prefer paddles
To bicycle saddles
Which cannot cope with his wobbly behind

An evening with friends on The Waverley
Meandering round isle and up loch
Seeing bens clad in heather
Ignoring the weather
Is like life in a magic pibroch

We retire inside for refreshments
After two hours we all feel a bit drouthy
We sit for a while there
With no sign of Smiler
He always flees when Rab gets out his moothie

Now it’s true there have sometimes been hiccups
Though the engines run smoothly as clocks
With no yellow marking
It is tricky parking
Or you end up with Scotch on the Rocks

The passengers are locals and tourists
So interesting to study behaviourally
We are calling it time
We have no more rhyme
Just our thanks for the Paddle Steamer Waverley.

Brian also sends these photos from the trip, although the one of the Waverley at Helensburgh Pier which also features a pigeon, must have been taken on a different day (or perhaps different summer) because the sun seems to be making an appearance!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Also, as I mentioned recently Brian and Phil did a five minute theatre presentation with some special needs kids in East Kilbride based on Brian’s book Jack the Little Giant and the Clock Tower. Click here to view a performance of that.
Brian is the narrator.
I’m thinking another kids’ author, Doctor Seuss here.
The Prat in the Hat?


It may not have been typical June weather but some friends and I boarded the Waverley last night for her annual Midsummer Evening Cruise.

The excursion waiting room.

The Waverley sails into Helensburgh on a driech night.

The last remaining seagoing paddle steamer also has an annual event in the struggle that it has to remain afloat financially. With the rise in fuel prices, the old girl costs a whopping £8 per minute in fuel costs alone. The crisis is so acute that there is real concern that this may be her final season on the Clyde.

It was heartening therefore to see so many people on board on such a wet night.

When you see the sheer beauty of the motion of the engine, it puts the cost into some perspective. There are probably better quality vids of the engine on Youtube but I took this one with the iPod last night:

We managed a look at the scenery between showers;

Carrick Castle, Loch Goil

An ElephantCanKeepDry!

It was a good night and I hope whatever the weather, people are still queuing up to board the fine vessel that is the Waverley for years to come.

The Waverley

Great day out in Rothesay yesterday. Coach trip to Wemyss Bay (Click Here for a superb picture of the station at Wemyss Bay) , ferry to one of the most beautiful islands in the British Isles (Bute). My annual games of dominoes, putting and “bools” – oh aye and much imbibing, good company and some nice food – magic

On the return journey, some of us noticed that we could take the rather more expensive but definitely more interesting journey home via the Waverley paddle steamer. Thus it was that three of us who were clearly drunk, incapable and having taken complete leave of our senses more discerning than the other fifty or so folk on the day out, forked out the extra £15 for a trip on the last seagoing paddle steamer in the world.

I took this photo (via the phone) as she arrived at Rothesay pier

The Waverley

I’ve featured this shot a few times, I took it five years ago as the old lady approached Helensburgh Pier.

This one was taken by BLFP correspondent Almax at Campbeltown in May this year.

I’m not able to display the image, but if you click here there is a quite stunning picture of the Waverley passing Dumbarton Rock and Castle.