The Leeds & Liverpool short boat George spent the early 20th century carrying coal from the mines of Wigan and Leigh to the city. George’s working life ended in the 1970s but, thanks to volunteers from the National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port, she is now restored and refurbished.
One of the last surviving boats of her type she returns to Liverpool Docks this month to give visitors an insight into her story and the history of the local waterways.
George will be open in Liverpool’s Salthouse Dock from 12 – 4pm on Tuesday 30 May, Wednesday 31 May and Thursday 1 June. Visitors will experience a little of what life was like in the cramped conditions on board this hard-working vessel, while activities will transport them back in time with dressing up, model boat making, and arts and crafts sessions.
From June onwards George continues her a new career as a floating education and visitor centre, travelling along the familiar routes of her working life on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal. Taking inspiration from the waterways the boat will help school groups explore local history, learn about rocks and fossils and discover the geography of the area.
Sam Marine our project assistant explains: "George’s history is interwoven with Liverpool’s story. The coal she carried from Wigan fuelled the city’s factories and power stations, and she was specifically designed to fit through the locks on the Leeds & Liverpool Canal, which give her the title of short boat. We are excited to see her back in the colourful livery of the National Coal Board and cannot wait to share her story with school groups and visitors.
We are also looking for education volunteers to join us on our adventures with George and help us keep our waterways history alive, exciting and relevant to our young visitors."
Schools interested in booking a visit, and anyone keen to volunteer should contact Sam Marine, firstname.lastname@example.org
During school holidays George will return to Liverpool Docks and be open for visitors. And over the summer holidays she will host an exciting calendar of events for all the family.