Saturday, 19 December 2015

LIGHTSHIP CORMORANT / LADY DIXON - Chapter 127



My historical research has been virtually moribund lately.  I have only two irons in the fire – or rather two straws in the wind !
   I have a reader in New Zealand whose great uncle served on Irish lightships. If the old chap agrees, I will go across to Ireland to meet him and try to record some of his memories of that service.  Such memories should not be allowed to just fade away. I don’t suppose for a minute that he served aboard Cormorant – but you never know.
   David Ryan, who helped me so much on my visit to Dublin, has passed on the name of a contact in the National Archives over there. He apparently works with maritime records, so there may be some digging to do there. Perhaps I could meet up with the great uncle and the archivist on the same trip.
   On the preservation front, besides acquiring a sample of the rope/rail clamp (see last post), I have also bought a sample of a contender for the stanchion brackets.  They are galvanised brackets with one arm 10”;  one arm 12”; and are quite substantial, weighing about 1.5 lb a piece (Photo 1271).  


   Each stanchion will have to have a bespoke fitting as not only is the bulwark a bit ‘irregular’, the ship was made slightly banana-shaped to assist drainage. So it slopes down from bow to amidships and then rises to the stern.  They managed in 1878, so there is no reason we cannot manage in 2016.
    I did think Simon was going to have the ship dressed overall for Christmas. Well he has managed to string up some festive lights (Photo 1272), but night time photography is obviously not his strong point!


A Happy Christmas to all our readers.
David