Friday, 15 May 2009


The vessel that had dragged her anchor off Largs was the former MacBrayne ferryboat LOCHNELL, which has been privately owned for several years. Built in 1941 by Silvers at Rosneath, she was originally a hospital launch used to ferry patients ashore from ships at anchor at the Tail of the Bank during the Second World War. She was bought by David MacBrayne Ltd in 1947 and placed on their Oban-Lismore ferry service. After spells in other areas, she was later employed on the Tobermory-Kilchoan route, until replaced by another vessel in 1981. She was then sold and embarked on a varied career, being reported as operating cruises on Loch Leven at one stage. LOCHNELL returned to the Clyde in more recent years, and in June 2003 had the distinction of being the last vessel to use the former Clyde Navigation Trust's slipway at Renfrew. LOCHNELL is seen here shortly after having been brought back to the safety of Fairlie Quay by FORTH HUNTER and the Largs lifeboat.