MV SEVERN PRINCESS is is the only ferry remaining from a set of 3 – the SEVERN KING, QUEEN and PRINCESS - who worked the Old Passage accross the River Severn, betwenn Aust and Beachley, Gloucestershire. She was built in 1959 by the Yorkshire Dry Docking Company, in Hull, and had a capacity for eighteen cars. She incorporated a turntable, opposite the gangplanks, to enable the manoeuvring of vehicles into tight parking spaces, and her wheelhouse was supported on a conning tower that enabled the skipper to view the whole vessel and the piers as he approached them to dock.
The SEVERN PRINCESS ferried passengers for The Old Passage Severn Ferry Company Limited until 1966, when the first Severn Bridge was opened. After this, she was sold West of Ireland Fisheries LTd in 1969, for which she worked for an inderteminate ammount of time until she was abandoned in Kilkieran Harbour, County Galway, Ireland, where she was found in 1999. At that point, she was brought back after considerable remedial works to Chepstow, Wales.
Currently, she remains there under conservation, managed by the Severn Princess Preservation Trust. The Trust was set up in 2018 to 1. advance the education of the public by the establishment and maintenance of a museum and associated artifacts in the subject of car and passenger carrying ferries used on the River Severn between 1929 and 1966, the part played by the River Severn in the history and economic development of Wales and England and the importance of river travel; and 2. preserve for the public benefit the SEVERN PRINCESS as the last of the River Severn Ferries and a vessel of historic interest.
Built by the Yorkshire Dry Docking Company, Hull
Closure of the Beachley - Aust Ferry Service with the opening of the first Severn Bridge
Purchased by West of Ireland Fisheries Ltd
Found abandoned in Kilkieran Harbour, Ireland, and brought back to Chepstow, Wales
The Severn Princess Preservation Trust was set up
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