Endeavour is unveiled
We can at last reveal the name of the Cotswold Canals Trust new Trip Boat which will soon take pride of place at Ebley.
This morning at first light, as is the tradition at R W Davis, the well-known Ship & Boat Building yard at Saul Junction, Gloucestershire, Narrowboat Endeavour slipped quietly from the paint dock onto the Stroudwater Navigation and out onto the Gloucester – Sharpness Canal.
Work still to be done
Some minor paintwork finishing and a little cleaning & tidying will be carried out before the boat is fully commissioned to perform its first serious duties…
…training the people who will crew the vessel along the Stroudwater Navigation from Ebley.
History, heritage & hard work play major parts in the restoration of the Stroudwater Navigation and Thames & Severn Canal.
Way back in the 1980's Cotswold Canals Trust members recognised Trip Boats as a means of raising funds and public awareness.
A succession of wooden vessels, some strapped together end to end, provided trips on whatever water was then available.
In the Trow magazine No. 103 – Winter 1998, CCT member Richard Atwood explained that the trip boat Perseverance (currently plying western waters) …
"Was named after the last Stroudwater barge which for many years lay on the canal bank at Ryeford.
"Those who chose the name recognised the obvious connotations with regard to the restoration project."
The author Humphrey Household tells us that The Thames & Severn Canal Company first had a need for its own vessels to deliver canal construction materials in 1784.
The company bought some second hand vessels and had another built in Stourport.
Next, the company engaged William Large, a local carpenter & millwright, to build two 30 ton canal boats on a temporary site at Wallbridge.
Those boats were named Adventure and Endeavour!
Top photo shows RWD's Chris Gardner in the paint dock
The dictionary uses the following terms to define 'endeavour'.
'to exert oneself, to do or effect something; to make an effort; to strive'
For over forty years now many people have exerted themselves, made great efforts and striven to effect something. That 'something' – navigable water – is growing by the day.
Consequently, history, heritage and the hard work of many people, past & present, determined that the new boat be named Endeavour.
Sources: The Thames & Severn Canal by Humphrey Household; Page 119; Para 3
Click here to find out more about CCT Trip Boating legacy.