Shipshape and Bristol Fashion!


Shipshape and Bristol Fashion!

An important part of the boatbuilding course at IBTC Portsmouth is getting out of the boatyard occasionally, engaging with people in the industry and seeing successful boatbuilding businesses in action. For the students of Boatbuilding Course 14, a recent two day trip to Gloucester and Bristol was a chance to do just that.

Day one was a tour of T. Nielson & Co in Gloucester docks. Nielson are a world renowned specialist in traditional shipbuilding, rigging and restoration, with previous projects including replacing planks on HMS Victory and refurbishing and rebuilding the masts and rigging for Earnest Shackelton and Robert Scott's ship the RSS Discovery. 

Day two was spent in Bristol, visiting several of the businesses based at the Underfall Yard on Bristol's floating harbour. The buildings and slipway of the Yard were rescued from dereliction in the 1990's with support from the City Council, national and regional funders and dedicated volunteers. Now run as a charitable trust, the yard is home to many different maritime-related businesses, as well as several clubs and organisations focused around water activities. Win Cnoops of Star Yachts, John Raymond Barker of Pilotcutter and Denis Platten of the Traditional Rigging Co were all happy to give some of their time to show the students around their enterprises.