Saturday 26 October 2013

two Bristol paddle steamers

Medway Queen, a Thames estuary pleasure steamer and Dunkirk veteran, was floated out of dry dock in Bristol yesterday, and is waiting for favourable weather for the tow back to her home waters. Here she is, from the same viewpoint as that used by John Nash in the 1930s, when he painted P&A Campbells's paddle steamer Britannia, when he was in Bristol in company with Eric Ravilious, on which occasion Rav almost came to a sticky end...

"...when Eric had decided to go on drawing outside after dark, and was working intently on his picture of a paddle steamer, he had suddenly heard a grinding noise and a voice calling out, 'lucky for you I saw you, old cock, or you'd have been a box of cold meat.' Eric had set up his easel, without noticing it was on the tracks of one of those light railways that are used in the docks." (Helen Binyon)

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