Previous names

  • 1946 - 1948 Silver Queen 2
  • 1948 Sheppey Queen
Certificate no 3656
Status Registered
paula.palmer

Details

Function Passenger Vessel
Subfunction Coastal
Location Faversham
Vessel type Ferry
Current use Private use
Available to hire No
Available for excursions No
Info required No

Construction

Builder Sittingbourne Building Co Ltd, Sittingbourne
Built in 1946
Hull material Wood
Rig Gaff - Other
Number of decks
Number of masts
Propulsion Motor
Primary engine type Diesel
Boiler type
Boilermaker None

Dimensions

Breadth: Beam
16.50 feet (5.03 m)
Air Draft
6.50 feet (1.98 m)
Length: Overall
46.00 feet (14.02 m)
Tonnage: Gross
33.55
Depth
3.50 feet (1.07 m)

History

Built in 1946, by the Sittingbourne Ship building Company, originally named SILVER QUEEN, she was registered as a wooden pleasure yacht.  Built to replace two boats that went to Dunkirk and did not return, SHEPPEY QUEEN was designed and owned by Nick Carter.  Her design is inspired by the Harbour Defence Motor Launches, also built at Milton creek. She is larch on oak, with three sealed bulkheads, built to be strong.  SILVER QUEEN was licensed to carry 120 people, and working of Sheerness Beach, she  offered pleasure trips around the Isle of Sheppey and  to see "the wreck”, MV Richard Montgomery.  As people started to travel further afield, the pleasure boating business became less viable, and she was offered for sale.

In 1948 she was bought by two brothers, Scottish boat builders, William Bald Ferguson of Rhumore, Kilmun, county of Argyll, & James Ferguson, of Glencreran, Kilmun, county of Argyll. The brothers sailed her up the East Coast of England, through the Caledonian Canal towards Holy Loch, Hunters Quay and Dunoon, which was to be her home for ten years. In Scotland, she was  licensed to carry up to 150 passengers and made extensive journeys, along the Clyde and around the neighbouring Scottish Islands. Her name change to SHEPPEY QUEEN came about when it was discovered that there was another Silver Queen. They called her SHEPPEY QUEEN, after the island from whence she came, utilising the big brass S and Q on the funnel. 

In 1958 she was sold to Henry Silvanus Austin Johns, oyster merchant from Falmouth and subsequently sold to Ralph Cravath Thomas, a farmer from St. Marys, Isles of Scilly in 1959.

In 1960  she was sold again to Ronald Frank Ricketts, marine engineer, Bexleyheath, Kent. He sold her to his company RG Passenger Launches, and for 20 years
 SHEPPEY QUEEN operated as  the Ford Ferry, carrying workers across the Thames, from Erith to Dagenham. Licensed to carry 150 people, she worked day and night. One passenger told me, “ in winter it was so cold, we would huddle around the funnel, or squeeze in down below”.

In 1980  she was bought by Jocelyn Ruth Purdy, a housewife, Harley Street, London.

1984 saw Wendy Byrd, of Salterns Quay, Yarmouth, Isle of Wight purchase SHEPPEY QUEEN. They lived on board as a family and for four years, the Byrd family worked Sheppey Queen as a passenger ferry, licensed to carry 12 people. They offered trips to the Needles.

In 1988 she was purchased by Doreen Patricia Johnson, a wages clerk from Manchester, and Helen Patricia Whitefoot, house wife from Winchester, who owned her for three months, then sold her  to Ivan Max Ringrose, a gentleman, of Fotherby, Nr. Loith, Lincolnshire in 1988.

1989 and SHEPPEY QUEEN was in a sorry state. She was discovered in Southampton, for sale and neglected. She was bought by Rear Admiral Terence Loughran and his daughter Rebecca Loughran, a naval family from London. For a year, they worked hard and brought her back to ship shape, then sailed her from Southampton to London.

2000 saw the latest owner falling in love with SHEPPEY QUEEN. Further restoration and dreams, have seen new engines put in the boat, the hull wooded, and planks needing repair tended to, by a master shipwright. She was dry docked and surveyed every five years. Restored somewhat, to her former glory,  she is mechanically sound, and her hull is well pickled and in good shape.  During these years, SHEPPEY QUEEN has journeyed from London to Faversham, and has settled back into her home waters. She is now looking for a new owner. She has the capacity to work as a ferry boat, and a coastal cruising vessel. She offers comfortable and characterful living facilities, including a bespoke handmade wooden bath!

Key dates

  • 1946

       Built in 1946, by the Sittingbourne Ship building Company, originally named Silver Queen 2  

  • 1948

    1948 saw her purchased by two Scottish boatbuilding brothers and re-name Sheppey Queen

  • 1958

    New owner - Henry Silvanus Austin Johns, oyster merchant from Falmouth

  • 1959

    New owner - Ralph Cravath Thomas, a farmer from St. Marys, Isles of Scilly

  • 1960

    New owner -  Ronald Frank Ricketts, marine engineer, Bexleyheath, Kent.

  • 1960's

    Worked for RG Passenger Launches Ltd

  • 1980

    New owner - Jocelyn Ruth Purdy, a housewife, Harley Street, London

  • 1984

    New owner - Wendy Byrd, of Salterns Quay, Yarmouth, Isle of Wight.

  • 1988

    New owners - Doreen Patricia Johnson, a wages clerk from Mancehster, and Helen Patricia Whitefoot

  • 1988

    New owner - Ivan Max Ringrose, a gentleman, of Fotherby, Nr. Loith, Lincolnshire

  • 1989

    New owner - Terence William  & Rebecca Loughran, a naval family, London

  • 2000

    Bought by current owner

Own this vessel?

If you are the owner of this vessel and would like to provide more details or updated information, please contact info@nationalhistoricships.org.uk

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