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Author Topic: Waverley - 2013 Season  (Read 2981 times)

BarryM

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Waverley - 2013 Season
« on: December 15, 2012, 03:33:39 pm »

At the end of the 2011 season, operating costs and not least the cost of fuel had raised a question mark over the continued operation of Waverley and Balmoral. Many people went on the final cruises of the 2011 season in the expectation that it would be the last chance to see them in action. The situation was saved by Mr & Mrs Weir, the Largs' Euromillions winners, making a donation sufficient to keep the vessels operating for the 2012 Season.
By the end of the 2012 Season, the adverse weather and thus cancellation of trips had created a 500,000 shortfall in revenue and future operation was again in doubt. Once more the Weirs have stepped in ( I hope they have a free excursion pass) but my understanding is that the front and back ends of Waverley's programme will be curtailed and Balmoral will not sail at all. ( I hope I'm proved wrong in this.)
Thus, if you decide on a day-out in 2013, consider the Waverley. If we don't use it we most certainly will lose it and once it's gone, it's gone.
Barry M
 
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BarryM

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #1 on: December 15, 2012, 03:37:15 pm »

Waverley off Helensburgh, August 2012. Yes, the sun was shining brightly!
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Neil

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #2 on: December 15, 2012, 03:40:18 pm »

I use it every (and I mean every) year when I go to Largs with the family on holiday........and can thoroughly recoment a trip around the Kyles of Bute or a longer trip round Ailsa graig...........especially in the sun...........lovely experience.
neil.
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2012, 04:02:46 pm »

I think they need to change the itinerary around a bit. It has remained the same for years which means that just about everyone who wanted to sail on her has done so once or twice and except for hardened shiplovers are unlikely to make many return visits. By altering the schedule it would open up new markets. For example, when Waverly has arrived down South at the end of the summer, all the kids have gone back to school so there is little opportunity for family outings except at the weekends plus the weather has frequently begun to turn for the worse resulting in a lot of cancellations.
 
Colin
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BarryM

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2012, 04:12:30 pm »

Colin,
I understand that Waverley will have a shortened season commencing in the South at start-May before returning to Scottish waters for June - August.
Regards,
Barry M
 
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2012, 05:06:27 pm »

That's interesting Barry, as long as they mean the South Coast and not just London. Realistically it is probably sensible to curtail the end of the season as there have simply been too many cancellations due to bad weather in recent years and I'm sure that will have put people off.
 
I do wonder if there would be a better market for her down South during the school summer holiday period but I read somewhere that there is some sort of legal obligation to cover Scottish waters during high season and I suppose that the Scottish summer is a bit shorter than the ones we have down here - if you can call them summers anymore...
 
But if she is to make money then she needs to go where the most potential passengers are although I wouldn't like to hazard a guess as to where that might be. I imagine that Western Isles sailings must be quite popular still.
 
Colin
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Bob K

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2012, 06:37:12 pm »

Strange way to run a business.  No sailings at all on their website, just an enquiries email address.
I remember when the Waverley plied a regular service through the Solent, often used her from Portsmouth
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BarryM

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2012, 06:47:53 pm »

See http://www.waverleyexcursions.co.uk/latestnews.htm
Why would you expect sailings be on the website? She does not operate after September and thus the  2012 sailings have long finished. The 2013 timetable will be published in early 2013.
Barry M
 
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Bob K

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #8 on: December 15, 2012, 07:26:38 pm »

See http://www.waverleyexcursions.co.uk/latestnews.htm
Why would you expect sailings be on the website? She does not operate after September and thus the  2012 sailings have long finished. The 2013 timetable will be published in early 2013.
Barry M

Why?  So people who may be interested can maybe make bookings, and bring some pennies in.
All the cross channel services seem to have their 2013 schedules online.
IMHO a poor way to run a business that relies heavily on support from enthuiasts -  Future a total blank right now.
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2012, 07:41:58 pm »

That's a little unfair Bob. Waverley is a bit of a shoestring operation and heavily dependent upon volunteers to keep running, not just in the operation of the ship but also in sorting out the shore side all around the UK.
 
Waverley calls all round the British coast at piers and other harbour facilities owned by a mixture of private and public organisations so negotiating and confirming landing rights must be something of a logistical nightmare. It's a very different scenario indeed to point to point cross Channel services.
 
Colin
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john s 2

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #10 on: December 16, 2012, 06:55:43 am »

Ive had many sailings when these ships sailed from Southend Pier. Watching them sail off after a wonderful voyage, always brought a tinge of sadness. In particular watching the Waverly leave into the setting Sun. Knowing its the only one left. Does make me wonder how the Medway Queen Replica will pay? Time will tell. John.
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #11 on: December 16, 2012, 09:23:22 am »

Quote
Does make me wonder how the Medway Queen Replica will pay? Time will tell. John.

I rather suspect it won't, just take passengers away from Waverley to some extent. Of course Medway Queen will be based in the South but it's the same old problem that once all the interested people living in the local area have been on the ship one or two times, you are scratching around for new customers. These days, day trips are not enough to support the running costs, you need other things too but paddle steamer hulls are quite small really so the options are limited, you can't hold a business conference  or event aboard or even a large party.
 
Colin
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furball

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #12 on: December 16, 2012, 05:32:32 pm »

For those of you that don't know, the Medway has lost the Kingswear Castle. From next year she'll be operating back on her old stamping ground, the Dart.

http://www.pskc.freeserve.co.uk/


Lance
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #13 on: December 16, 2012, 05:46:22 pm »

That's very interesting Lance. I remember travelling on her during familiy holidays when she was on the Dart, I'd think she will be quite popular there.
 
Colin
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BarryM

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #14 on: December 17, 2012, 12:32:52 pm »

Colin,
Latest info on routes for 2013 below and I understand that issue of the timetables is "imminent".
"Waverley will continue to serve the communities in all the areas she has operated for so long. In 2013 you can step aboard the ship in the Western Isles, Clyde, Bristol Channel, South Coast and Thames with a long awaited return to North Wales in the planning. We thank you for your continued support of the Waverley Charity and look forward to welcoming you on board next year."
As you noted, the Waverley is NOT a continuous, year-round operation with operational back-up supplied by large financial resources and paid technical, personnel, administrative and PR departments.  She is run largely by volunteers on a very low budget and without those volunteers would have gone to the scrap yard long ago and, with her, an important bit of marine engineering history. Even with the volunteer manpower, it still takes the generosity of those individuals and companies prepared to put their hands in their pockets, to keep her going.  Thus, when you are in the position of not knowing if the current season is your last or not, it is impossible to issue continuously updated timetables.
One point I would make is that when not on a scheduled excursion both vessels are available for weddings, functions and corporate events. They're not that small! (See "Private Hire" on the website.)
Regards, Corporate Dinners, Product Launches, Christmas Parties
Barry M
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Colin Bishop

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #15 on: December 17, 2012, 12:52:50 pm »

Thanks for putting me right about private hire Barry, I suppose I was thinking of the rather larger events I used to attend where you needed to be able to address quite a lot of people in a single space, usually with the inevitable Power Point presentation!
 
Colin
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davidjt

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Re: Waverley - 2013 Season
« Reply #16 on: December 17, 2012, 01:59:21 pm »

hi barry
 
that is fantastic news about plannig to come to north wales, hope it happens :-) :-) i for one will certainly be on board,
haveing built a model of her some years a go,i have never been able to sail on the real one.
 
david
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