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The Boat Build Begins

It’s a little over 7 weeks since one lonely flat piece of steel, albeit rather a large piece of flat steel, sat on the floor of Tyler Wilson’s factory in Stoke on Trent and now we are marking the first of the larger landmarks in the building of the Wessex Rose.

The steelwork is finished and the hull is complete so it’s time to take her from the only home she has known to her new temporary residence at Milburn Boats in Daventry. Andy & Peter Milburn and their team have a 4 month project to turn this massive hull into a 40 tonnes of moving luxury.

The story so far has been amazing, Tim Tyler and his work force have lavished so much attention on the Wessex Rose and now justifiably pride themselves in what they have created. Canal boat design at its very best as raw, hard, cold and lifeless steel has become a thing of beauty. Practical in every sense, strength built in to every joint, every plate and every bearer yet with curves and lines that make her come to life.

Her lonely keel plate in mid-October was soon joined by a keel beam, then cross members, a stern, sides, upright bearers, her distinctive bow, fuel tanks, waste tanks, keel cooling tanks, engine and generator bays, gunwales with gently curving lines, water tank and gas lockers. Then a big day as the cabin, fabricated separately, was lifted into place and made her look almost complete.

Bow thruster tubes, weed hatches and rudder stock were installed in the hull and hatches, windows, and sun roof apertures cut into the cabin structure. Steps to the roof deck and the deck supports were installed as were finishing touches such as the mooring bollards and she was ready for the off.

Good bye to Tyler Wilson’s in Stoke and hello to Milburn Boats in Daventry as the Wessex Rose is inched out of the factory, lifted and swung by a giant crane onto an abnormal load road vehicle and, with escorts in place, she is off to cause a traffic jam!!

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