Built in 1954 by Cochrane & Sons of Selby for the Alexandra Towing Co. Ltd, CANNING is an oil burning steam tug with a triple expansion engine by C D Holmes & Co. Ltd., Hull. She was the first oil burning tug built for the company and, for the next 5 years, all other company tugs were of similar design and appearance. CANNING was based at Liverpool until being transferred to Swansea in 1966. Her main duties at both ports were towing and berthing large ships in the harbours and docks, but barge towage and coastal towage were also undertaken. She became the last steam tug to operate in the Bristol Channel, serving until 1974. In December 1974, she was acquired by Swansea City Council for preservation and has retained the fleet colours of the Alexandra Towing Co, Ltd; her original owners.
Source: Paul Brown, Historic Ships The Survivors (Amberley, 2010), updated Mar 2011.
P N Waine, British Steam Tugs (1983) pub: Waine Research
Steamboat Register: An illustrated Register of surviving steam vessels in the British Isles (May Edition 6, 1994) pub: Steam Boat Association of Great Britain
W B Hallam, Blow Five: A History of the Alexandra Towing Co Ltd (1976)
C R Kaye, Fact Sheet: The Alexandra Towing Company Ltd pub: Swansea Maritime and Industrial Museum
C R Kaye, Exhibit Sheet: Steam Tug Canning pub: Swansea Maritime and Indistrial Museum
Built by Cochrane of Selby
Bought by Swansea City Council for preservation
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