Marsh Award for ShipShape Volunteer Project

This Marsh Award is to help National Historic Ships celebrate and recognise volunteers working on vessels which are registered with the National Historic Ships’ ShipShape Network which brings together owners of historic vessels, providing them with resources and support to maintain their vessels. 

MV Balmoral Volunteers 2022

This team of volunteers are vital to the high standard of upkeep and maintenance of the MV Balmoral and without them the vessel would not have a future. The volunteers cover a range of skills and trades that enables them to achieve any work and maintenance that is required. The volunteers help with the sealing of the deck, replacing of any planks and make huge contributions to protecting the interior. They also remove rotten areas of timber, ready for repair pieces and ensure that there is enough varnish on the mast and that the paint work is up to scratch. The MV Balmoral Education Team is a huge part of the MV Balmoral, raising funds and engaging schools and the community in exciting projects that link the ship to businesses and the users of the Bristol Waterways. The volunteers work with school children and families on maritime related challenges or tasks to boost their understanding of the vessel and address the need to appeal to transnational communities and decolonise the narrative of Bristol’s harbor, aiming to appeal to a diverse audience. Some volunteers are recruited to be able to speak about topics from their experiences as seafarers or migrants.

Previous Winners

The Steam Tug Kerne Preservation Society 

The engineering volunteers of the society took on the very difficult and time consuming task of replacing all 80 screwed stay tubes in Kerne’s Steam boiler (built in 1936) without using modern welding repair methods. The route of using traditional methods is not usually taken because of its difficulty, but the volunteers took on this challenge in order to keep these traditional skills alive and maintaining the authenticity of the vessel. Over 10,000 volunteer man hours over a three year period have been required to research, devise and complete the work to bring the riveted boiler back in good repair to enable Kerne to sail by steam again this year. The volunteers have been led by Chris Heyes, a founding member of the Preservation Society who is the vessel’s Chief Engineer.