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'Bring this historic schooner back to Flintshire'

Published date: 01 September 2010 |
Published by: Helen Davies
Read more articles by Helen Davies


 

BRING her home to Deeside!

That is the call as an historic tall ship built in the region prepares for a sentimental return.

The Kathleen And May, featured in the 1970s hit TV series The Onedin Line, is due to visit Liverpool next spring.

Now Roy Norry, webmaster of northwaleslinks.co.uk, is calling for the ship to come home to Connah’s Quay to teach young people about the town’s historic maritime importance.

The ship, Britain’s last three-masted topsail schooner, was built in the Flintshire town in 1900 for Captain John Coppack to use for cargo trading.

During its stay in Liverpool’s Canning Dock next March, it will be sailing along the North Wales coast as it takes passengers on a series of overnight and day-long trips.

Roy said: “If the Kathleen And May is going to be sailing regularly in the area we should look at the possibility of bringing her back to the Connah’s Quay dock for old times’ sake.

“The ship was a key part of the history around the docks.

“I don’t think most of the kids in the area have the faintest idea about the importance of Connah’s Quay.

“Returning the ship would be a great way to bring it back into focus.”

The Connah’s Quay resident hopes that returning the ship to the town will boost the redevelopment work carried out locally in recent years and attract new members to the town’s community groups.

He said: “Dock Road has been redeveloped and the Connah’s Quay festival came to the docks last year.

“If people are reminded of the area’s maritime history it would be good for the town’s sea cadets in terms of membership.”

The ship is currently owned by Steve and Marilyn Clarke, from Bideford in Devon, who restored it to its former glory after finding it derelict in 1998.

-  Would you like to see the ship returned to Connah’s Quay? Have your say by leaving a comment below.

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  1. Posted by: jbsandown at 11:58 on 01 September 2010 Report

    Hello This is a great idea Roy. Deeside has a tremendous maritime heritage and "Kathleen & May" was proudly at the heart of it. My family built and worked on ships like this at Connahs Quay. What a prospect. K&M moored in the river between the two Dee road bridges. Now that's what I call a worthy sight to welcome visitors to this part of Our Lovely Land. p.s. I'll volunteer to fund and make a short documentary film on the progress of this project -just contact me.

  2. Posted by: Spike at 14:19 on 15 September 2010 Report

    Connah's Quay Docks are steeped in history and it would be a great idea to welcome home the Kathleen & May. Such an event would educate local children about their local heritage and possibly encourage local initiatives to regenerate interest in the docks area. This was a major port in its day but is now hardly used. What other town in Britain has a river running alongside it but does not exploit the river for transport or tourism purposes?

  3. Posted by: raymond1 at 19:30 on 13 February 2011 Report

    I am part of the main family that built th Kathleen and May. I would like to see if there are any family members, photos or information on the Baird family. I have a lot of information going back to 1800 but would be Very interested in members details. e-mail debbiebaird10@hotmail.com Thanks. I am also going to look forward to seeing the vessel after much research

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