The first CRSC meeting of 2014 took place on January 8 at Jurys Inn, Glasgow.
Iain Quinn, presented another of his comprehensive slide-shows, which covered the periods of winter service provided by the ferries and their crews on the Firth of Clyde and in the Western Isles. Iain explained that he had tested the definition of “winter” with a few friends and they had all given him a different view. He was confident that the slides he was about to show would speak for themselves!
Juno at Gourock
Isle of Mull off Duart Castle
Brodick Bay – CRSC Excursion 09/01/99
Juno at Wemyss Bay
|Clansman’s wake leaving Brodick – CRSC Excursion 09/01/99|
Isle of Arran and Jupiter at Gourock
There was a little self indulgence, together with some “adjustment of the boundaries”, as he took us on a winter sailing of Waverley heading south for annual survey in January. A few photographs taken during summer seasons could have easily been mistaken for “Bleak Mid-winter”. However, the vast majority of images with snow covered, sun-kissed hill tops in the back ground left us in no doubt that we were being taken back to a time when a very different kind of winter service was being offered in significantly different circumstances, to what services are operated under today.
Iain repeatedly paid tribute to the skills, experience and dedication of all the crews, past and present, who operate the lifeline services throughout the year and often in very challenging circumstances. He also recognised that today’s passenger has somewhat different expectations from their predecessor. A simple example being the Largs to Cumbrae service – would anyone today actually get on board Ashton or Leven for a winter’s trip to Millport?
Clansman off Mull
Loch Linnhe at Raasay
MV Dalmarnock off Garroch Head
|Jupiter in Northerly Gale at Rothesay|
During his commentary Iain explained that the slides he was showing came from within his own collection but they had been taken by good friends such as Hamish Stewart, Bert Scott, Donald Robertson and Jim Aikman Smith.
A brief tour around some Western Isles locations showed some of the conditions which require to be dealt with in winter period, the flexibility of the fleet in covering winter overhaul periods, and some unusual locations for vessels as the travel to or from overhaul.
Winter excursions and charters were are also shown during his presentation.
Iain gave his audience an enjoyable view of winter after one of the bleakest mid-winter periods we have experienced for some time.
Roy Paterson gave the vote of thanks.
All photographs are from Iain Quinn’s collection; taken by Hamish Stewart, John Ramsay, Donald Robertson and Iain Quinn