Fringe Box



A Steamy Welcome Awaits At Dapdune Wharf

Published on: 7 Jul, 2015
Updated on: 21 Aug, 2015

The National Trust’s picturesque Dapdune Wharf in Guildford will play host to around a dozen steam boats and launches on Saturday, July 18, for its popular Puffing-a-Wey event.

There will be steamboats galore on the River Wey at Daphne Wharf.

There will be steamboats galore on the River Wey at Daphne Wharf.

The visiting boats, ranging from 14ft to 42ft in length are privately owned by members of the Steamboat Association of Great Britain and will be coming from as far afield as Devon, Kent and the Midlands.

River Wey steamboater Mark Rudall said: “Most of the surviving really historic small steam launches that were to be found on our rivers and canals 120 years ago are now exhibits in museums. So the boats visiting at the weekend are all 20th or even 21st century, but they are built just as the old ones were and work in just the same way.

“Many are very beautiful indeed and make a real picture on our serene River Wey.

“Some of them burn coal, so there will be some nice ‘coal and hot oil’ fragrances wafting around. Others burn oil, but most of them have exposed steam engines which are really interesting to watch in motion.

“Of course, they all have whistles and most have Windermere kettles for that essential cup of tea.”

The steamboats will not be alone at Dapdune, which was the historic boatyard and central depot of the Wey Navigation. Model railway enthusiasts will be welcomed by members of the Astolat Model Railway Club and Guildford Model Engineering Society will also be in attendance.

You will have a chance to take a ride on some of the boats.

You will have a chance to take a ride on some of the boats.

Mark added: “This is the fourth year running that the National Trust has welcomed steamboaters to their beautiful central Guildford wharf.

“All told, in Puffing-a-Wey this year the National Trust is mounting something of a mini retro transport fest which should provide something for family members of all ages.

“Those of us bringing our boats are grateful for the opportunity to enjoy the waterway.

“For those who ask nicely there might just be a chance to join some of us for a quick puff round to get a flavour of what steamboating can be like!”

For more details call the National Trust at Daphne Wharf on 01483 561389.

Share This Post

Leave a Comment

Please see our comments policy. All comments are moderated and may take time to appear.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *