There can be no better opening to a season than to have a talk by Ian Quinn on the Clyde. His theme ‘In the Wake of the Queen Mary’ was a celebration of the Clyde's last turbine excursion steamer and her return home. Sailing from Bridge Wharf in the city centre she carried an average of 13,500 passengers a week, some half a million a year from 1933 to the late 50’s down river to Dunoon, Rothesay and the Kyles of Bute. She resumed these sailings after being reboilered and fitted with a single funnel in 1957 to become the last operational Clyde Steamer until her withdrawal in 1977. We sailed past the hailing stations, made our way between all manner of river craft from chain dredgers, hopper barges, cross river ferries, and tugs out to the pilot cutters off Greenock. Looking back, I for one, did not appreciate how transient the scene of Blue Funnel, Clan Line and other vessels moored end to end in George V, Rothesay docks and along the quays was. His photographs encaptured the spirit of the period, not just the ships but the docks, cranes, shipyards and associated buildings all now vanished. A thoroughly enjoyable evening enhanced by a knowledgeable and in depth commentary.
Notes for 2016 -17