1940 Glasgow-built paddle steamer LINCOLN CASTLE is in imminent risk of being lost to scrappers, as societies and individuals meet and plan, the demolition company is already on board.
LINCOLN CASTLE was launched on September 24, 1934, completed 1940 and brought to the River Humber in 1941 to accompany existing Humber ferries on passenger service. War duties intervened and saw her sailing on various routes around the Humber before she was placed in public service on the New Holland to Hull route, operated by the London and North Eastern Railway. The railways were nationalization in 1948, her new owners became by British Railways (later known as British Rail). LINCOLN CASTLE remained on this route until 1978 as the last coal-fired paddle steamer providing regular service in the UK. A failed a boiler inspection saw her withdrawn from service.
LINCOLN CASTLE was opened as a pub and moored at Hessle, near the Humber Bridge which, when it opened in 1981, spanning the Humber Estuary, effectively ended all ferry crossings. Sold and moved to a berth at Immingham for refurbishment, she was reopened as a bar and restaurant in 1989 at the National Fishing Heritage Centre in Alexandra Dock, Grimsby and open until 2006.
Earlier this year it was announced that unless a new owner could be found, the vessel would be scrapped. Press reports suggest that The Paddle Steamer Preservation Society is, as of July 7th, providing advice and support to the Hull-based Lincoln Castle Preservation Society, without becoming directly involved in the last ditch effort to save the vessel.
UPDATE: August 20, 2010: It was reported in local press that the LINCOLN CASTLE Preservation Society Chairman Stephen Sharpe said: “We raised £103,200 in just five weeks, but still they (owners of the ship) won’t accept it. They only asked for £20,000 a short while ago.” Woodwork and internal fittings have been removed and the hull is set to be dismantled by the end of the month.
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MARTIN COX - Founder and publisher of MaritimeMatters, inspired by maritime culture and technology growing up in the port of Southampton. He works as a photographer in Los Angeles, and his works has been exhibited in LA, San Francisco, New York, London and Iceland. Martin is the co-writer of the book “Hollywood to Honolulu; the story of the Los Angeles Steamship Company” published by the Steam Ship Historical Society of America. The Los Angeles Maritime Museum has commissioned artworks and collected his photographs.