Occasional tedious ramblings from a feminist, atheist, autistic academic and historic narrow boater who likes cats, beer, tea, and solitude, and is strangely fascinated by the cinema organ.
Friday, 10 August 2018
Harland and Wolff
Apologies for the lack of a witty title. Diamond Geezer set me off this morning. He's visiting points across London, travelling from east to west, along the line of latitude 51.5 degrees north. This is the line of latitude that Greenwich is on, and he doesn't see why its line of longitude (albeit that that's zero) should get all the attention.
Now, I've always had trouble pinning down just where the Woolwich shipyard was, but I reckoned it must be somewhere roughly near that line. And it was while searching online for its co-ordinates (unsuccessfully) I came across a website I hadn't previously seen, dedicated to Harland and Wolff.
It's a bit thin on the Woolwich operation, which does in the scheme of things seem to have been rather small beer - from what I can tell, although they did refurbishments, no massive ships were built here, but largely barges, lighters and of course narrow boats. The yard was in operation from 1924 - 1972. One interesting suggestion that the site makes is that there are now probably more Harland and Wolff built boats on the English canal system than anywhere else.
The site isn't fantastically written, and its coverage of narrow boats is quite superficial, but the few pictures make it well worth a look. There is a list of boats (although it doesn't distinguish between motors and butties) but the dates on it (assuming they are delivery dates) don't tie up with those provided by Faulkner - for example, it shows Chertsey's birthday as 25th February 1937, whereas I've previously had it as 29th January.
Now, if I could just find those co-ordinates, I could finally track the place down and make a pilgrimage...