HY Tyne Preservation Newsletter June 2014

The Statutory Declarations concerning our ownership of HY Tyne have been accepted by Heritage Lottery and we have now received an amount of £34,800 from the being the first 50% of the stage 1 grant.

This allows us to bring in all the contractors, such as the surveyor, the shipwright, the metal fabricators and the archaeologist under paid contracts to enable them & us to confirm all the work we wish to have done to preserve her, and that their original cost estimates remain good within 5% or so.

In the case of the Shipwright, we will have a discussion with him about how he will undertake the work to remove the stem of the vessel and replace it without the need for dry docking her. Clearly, this is the largest part of the engineering work and the method used may have an impact on the operation of the House Yacht to our members, if even for a short time and we will seek to minimise this disruption or to ensure that the work can proceed without any disruption to the House Yacht & members activities.

The shipwright we are working with is Tommi Nielsen of Gloucester Docks who is probably the only remaining timber shipwright in the UK who can handle a project of this size & complexity.

One of his current contracts is the re-planking of the hull of Victory in Portsmouth Dockyard, so he is well respected within the Industry & recognised for his ability.

This gives us confidence that he can undertake the work with minimum disruption to the workings of the Royal Northumberland Yacht Club.

We have also appointed ConsultRobinson as our lead Project Co-ordinator and they are meeting with the steering group immediately to move things forward. ConsultRobinson was our chosen contractor for the stage 1 bid preparation and their knowledge of the vessel, their enthusiasm and willingness to become heavily committed was shown then and is the reason why we have decided to continue with them.

Last month, we were visited by Anthony Lane, the leading Authority in the UK on timber light vessels and he gave us a few more bricks to put into our knowledge wall.

LV 50 was the only Light vessel to be fitted with a whaleback to her stern. This is the enclosed poop deck which we now use partially as a galley store. She was designed this way deliberately as her role was to be on permanent station on Severn Stones reef between Lands End & the Scillies and where the seas are so severe she was in constant fear of being pooped by a wave. Imagine lying at anchor and having to endure the sort of seas that this whaleback was designed to overcome!!

For interest, we are considering restoring this whaleback to the way it originally was by removing the windows during the metal work phase of the project.

She was serviced at Penzance depot of Trinity house until about 1902 when she was re-stationed to Shambles off Weymouth.

From 1910, she was positioned on the Outer Gabbard sand bank off Harwich in the approaches to the Thames and during this time in 1911 was refitted at Harwich with Hornsby Hotbulb compressors for a triple reed fog horn.

In 1935 she was moved to Warner reef off Bembridge on the Isle of White.

Ten years later, she was moved to her final position on the Calshott spit sandbank in Southampton water having survived the war unscathed although many of her contemporaries were either sunk or damaged through arial bombardment.

Next month, I will endeavour to describe more about her interior, of which there are features that are not necessarily apparent but which add colour and depth to her life.