A merry group of Association Members from around the UK gathered for a weekend of maritime history and fun early in February.  Staying at a partly self-catered centre run by the Avon Wildlife Trust, we met up on Friday afternoon and enjoyed a sociable evening of catching up with old friends and getting to know some new folk.  We were thrilled to be joined by three visitors from Germany, Holland and the US, proving again the strength of the ties built up between S&S enthusiasts.  







Saturday morning saw us heading for the maritime heartland of Bristol.  First stop was the SS Great Britain – “the ship that changed the world”.  Launched in 1843, the SS GB was designed by the world renowned engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel.  She was the first  iron-built steam ship to use a screw propeller rather than a paddle wheel, and was the longest passenger ship in the world (at 98 m) until 1854.  For a few years she carried passengers in luxury across the Atlantic in a record time of 14 days, but after various financial and practical mishaps she was sold.  From 1852 to 1881, she carried thousands of migrants to Australia, plus soldiers to the Crimean War, before being converted to all-sail and, after a few years as a coal carrier, retiring to the Falkland Islands where she was used as a warehouse, quarantine ship and coal hulk.  Scuttled and sunk in 1937 she laid underwater for 33 years before funds were raised to repair and transport her back to the Bristol dry dock where she was built.






Today she sits in the original dry dock, enclosed under a stunning water-covered glass floor positioned along her waterline, in a dehumidified environment designed to maintain her integrity.  The interior of the ship has been restored to show the stages in its history, from its glory days, including a beautiful first class dining room and promenade deck (the top decks were used for storing livestock and other goods for the passage), through to steerage cabins and coal holds.


Ian, our knowledgeable guide, provide a fascinating tour around the ship and everyone enjoyed relaxing in luxury in the dining room and poking their noses into cabins (both 1st class and steerage), and the galley, the ship’s doctors and the engine room.


We then moved on to the newly opened “Being Brunel” museum, for a trip through his eventful life, before lunch and a boat trip around the Bristol Floating Dock, so-called because it is enclosed by lock gates from the heavily tidal River Severn, thus maintaining water at all time.


Back to base for a delightful dinner and showing of the wonderful film “The Weekend Sailor” telling the story of the Mexican team who, against all odds, won the first Whitbread Round the World Race.


After a relaxed breakfast and a quick meeting of the Association Committee, we headed our various ways home, all fired up for preparations for the new season ahead and promising to see each other in Helsinki in June.







Saturday morning saw us heading for the maritime heartland of Bristol.  First stop was the SS Great Britain – “the ship that changed the world”.  Launched in 1843, the SS GB was designed by the world renowned engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel.  She was the first  iron-built steam ship to use a screw propeller rather than a paddle wheel, and was the longest passenger ship in the world (at 98 m) until 1854.  For a few years she carried passengers in luxury across the Atlantic in a record time of 14 days, but after various financial and practical mishaps she was sold.  From 1852 to 1881, she carried thousands of migrants to Australia, plus soldiers to the Crimean War, before being converted to all-sail and, after a few years as a coal carrier, retiring to the Falkland Islands where she was used as a warehouse, quarantine ship and coal hulk.  Scuttled and sunk in 1937 she laid underwater for 33 years before funds were raised to repair and transport her back to the Bristol dry dock where she was built.






Today she sits in the original dry dock, enclosed under a stunning water-covered glass floor positioned along her waterline, in a dehumidified environment designed to maintain her integrity.  The interior of the ship has been restored to show the stages in its history, from its glory days, including a beautiful first class dining room and promenade deck (the top decks were used for storing livestock and other goods for the passage), through to steerage cabins and coal holds.


Ian, our knowledgeable guide, provide a fascinating tour around the ship and everyone enjoyed relaxing in luxury in the dining room and poking their noses into cabins (both 1st class and steerage), and the galley, the ship’s doctors and the engine room.


We then moved on to the newly opened “Being Brunel” museum, for a trip through his eventful life, before lunch and a boat trip around the Bristol Floating Dock, so-called because it is enclosed by lock gates from the heavily tidal River Severn, thus maintaining water at all time.


Back to base for a delightful dinner and showing of the wonderful film “The Weekend Sailor” telling the story of the Mexican team who, against all odds, won the first Whitbread Round the World Race.


After a relaxed breakfast and a quick meeting of the Association Committee, we headed our various ways home, all fired up for preparations for the new season ahead and promising to see each other in Helsinki in June.







Saturday morning saw us heading for the maritime heartland of Bristol.  First stop was the SS Great Britain – “the ship that changed the world”.  Launched in 1843, the SS GB was designed by the world renowned engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel.  She was the first  iron-built steam ship to use a screw propeller rather than a paddle wheel, and was the longest passenger ship in the world (at 98 m) until 1854.  For a few years she carried passengers in luxury across the Atlantic in a record time of 14 days, but after various financial and practical mishaps she was sold.  From 1852 to 1881, she carried thousands of migrants to Australia, plus soldiers to the Crimean War, before being converted to all-sail and, after a few years as a coal carrier, retiring to the Falkland Islands where she was used as a warehouse, quarantine ship and coal hulk.  Scuttled and sunk in 1937 she laid underwater for 33 years before funds were raised to repair and transport her back to the Bristol dry dock where she was built.






Today she sits in the original dry dock, enclosed under a stunning water-covered glass floor positioned along her waterline, in a dehumidified environment designed to maintain her integrity.  The interior of the ship has been restored to show the stages in its history, from its glory days, including a beautiful first class dining room and promenade deck (the top decks were used for storing livestock and other goods for the passage), through to steerage cabins and coal holds.


Ian, our knowledgeable guide, provide a fascinating tour around the ship and everyone enjoyed relaxing in luxury in the dining room and poking their noses into cabins (both 1st class and steerage), and the galley, the ship’s doctors and the engine room.


We then moved on to the newly opened “Being Brunel” museum, for a trip through his eventful life, before lunch and a boat trip around the Bristol Floating Dock, so-called because it is enclosed by lock gates from the heavily tidal River Severn, thus maintaining water at all time.


Back to base for a delightful dinner and showing of the wonderful film “The Weekend Sailor” telling the story of the Mexican team who, against all odds, won the first Whitbread Round the World Race.


After a relaxed breakfast and a quick meeting of the Association Committee, we headed our various ways home, all fired up for preparations for the new season ahead and promising to see each other in Helsinki in June.






Saturday morning saw us heading for the maritime heartland of Bristol.  First stop was the SS Great Britain – “the ship that changed the world”.  Launched in 1843, the SS GB was designed by the world renowned engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel.  She was the first  iron-built steam ship to use a screw propeller rather than a paddle wheel, and was the longest passenger ship in the world (at 98 m) until 1854.  For a few years she carried passengers in luxury across the Atlantic in a record time of 14 days, but after various financial and practical mishaps she was sold.  From 1852 to 1881, she carried thousands of migrants to Australia, plus soldiers to the Crimean War, before being converted to all-sail and, after a few years as a coal carrier, retiring to the Falkland Islands where she was used as a warehouse, quarantine ship and coal hulk.  Scuttled and sunk in 1937 she laid underwater for 33 years before funds were raised to repair and transport her back to the Bristol dry dock where she was built.






Today she sits in the original dry dock, enclosed under a stunning water-covered glass floor positioned along her waterline, in a dehumidified environment designed to maintain her integrity.  The interior of the ship has been restored to show the stages in its history, from its glory days, including a beautiful first class dining room and promenade deck (the top decks were used for storing livestock and other goods for the passage), through to steerage cabins and coal holds.


Ian, our knowledgeable guide, provide a fascinating tour around the ship and everyone enjoyed relaxing in luxury in the dining room and poking their noses into cabins (both 1st class and steerage), and the galley, the ship’s doctors and the engine room.


We then moved on to the newly opened “Being Brunel” museum, for a trip through his eventful life, before lunch and a boat trip around the Bristol Floating Dock, so-called because it is enclosed by lock gates from the heavily tidal River Severn, thus maintaining water at all time.


Back to base for a delightful dinner and showing of the wonderful film “The Weekend Sailor” telling the story of the Mexican team who, against all odds, won the first Whitbread Round the World Race.


After a relaxed breakfast and a quick meeting of the Association Committee, we headed our various ways home, all fired up for preparations for the new season ahead and promising to see each other in Helsinki in June.




Today she sits in the original dry dock, enclosed under a stunning water-covered glass floor positioned along her waterline, in a dehumidified environment designed to maintain her integrity.  The interior of the ship has been restored to show the stages in its history, from its glory days, including a beautiful first class dining room and promenade deck (the top decks were used for storing livestock and other goods for the passage), through to steerage cabins and coal holds.


Ian, our knowledgeable guide, provide a fascinating tour around the ship and everyone enjoyed relaxing in luxury in the dining room and poking their noses into cabins

Saturday morning saw us heading for the maritime heartland of Bristol.  First stop was the SS Great Britain – “the ship that changed the world”.  Launched in 1843, the SS GB was designed by the world renowned engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel. She was the first  iron-built steam ship to use a screw propeller rather than a paddle wheel, and was the longest passenger ship in the world (at 98 m) until 1854.  For a few years she carried passengers in luxury across the Atlantic in a record time of


14 days, but after various financial and practical mishaps she was sold.  From 1852 to 1881, she carried thousands of migrants to Australia, plus soldiers to the Crimean War, before being converted to all-sail and, after a few years as a coal carrier, retiring to the Falkland Islands where she was used as a warehouse, quarantine ship and coal hulk.  Scuttled and sunk in 1937 she laid underwater for 33 years before funds were raised to repair and transport her back to the Bristol dry dock where she was built.

(both 1st class and steerage), and the galley, the ship’s doctors and the engine room.


Back to base for a delightful dinner and showing of the wonderful film “The Weekend Sailor” telling the story of the Mexican team who, against all odds, won the first Whitbread Round the World Race.


After a relaxed breakfast and a quick meeting of the Association Committee, we headed our various ways home, all fired up for preparations for the new season ahead and promising to see each other in Helsinki in June.



We then moved on to the newly opened “Being Brunel” museum, for a trip through his eventful life, before lunch and a boat trip around the Bristol Floating Dock, so-called because it is enclosed by lock gates from the heavily tidal River Severn, thus maintaining water at all time.


S&S


Association