Saturday, 6 September 2014

Tall Ships, Tall Bridge, Tall Story

Would you think that I was spinning a yarn if I told you that yesterday we sailed down the Thames to Woolwich in a procession of Thames sailing barges in order to look at the Tall Ships moored at Greenwich?
Well, it's true. 
Tower Bridge lifting for a Thames sailing barge.
As we boarded the Lady Daphne at St Katherine Pier, Tower Bridge was raised to allow a barge to pass through. We then took our place as number two in a line of four Thames barges and set off downstream.

Coal-fired steam tugboat Portwey, built in 1927.
We were shortly passed by this magnificent steam tugboat, the Portwey, here seen blowing her siren. The sound echoed around as it bounced from the riverside buildings - easily the loudest noise in that part of London.

Crowds at the Royal Naval College, Greenwich.
The crowds lining the embankment outside the Royal Naval College at Greenwich welcomed us as part of the pageant which is the Greenwich Tall Ships Festival 2014.

Then it was onward towards Woolwich to meet the Tall Ships as they came up the River Thames from the sea.


      Tall Ships


Having waved and shouted ourselves silly at the other ships we then carried on downstream passing through the Thames Barrier and effected an interesting pirouette movement in midstream whilst the two Woolwich ferries performed a ballet around us as they tried to reach their respective landing stages.

Nearly home. Lady Daphne approaching Tower Bridge.
Margaret smiling with relief.
And back we went to St Katherine Pier. A big thank you to our friends Michael and Elisabeth Mainelli who invited us as guests on board their Thames sailing barge, Lady Daphne, to take part in this historic procession. It was great fun.

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