A public appeal has been launched to 'urgently' raise funds to enable the historic Paddle Steamer Waverley amid a funding crisis.

The management of the ship say they desperately need an injection of funds to afford dry dock fees and re-commissioning costs, and therefore sail in 2023.


READ MORE: Here's how to subscribe to the News for £2 for to months

In 2022 operating costs soared which has resulted in a lack of funds to survive the winter maintenance period, despite carrying over 100,000 passengers last year.
Paul Semple, Waverley’s General Manager, explained “Waverley must be taken out of the water and dry docked annually before her sailing season begins. She is now booked to dry dock in late-March and then re-enter service in May. 
"Due to increased operating costs last season we don’t have enough money to afford this year’s dry dock and the numerous other costs we incur in the weeks before Waverley starts sailing.

"Last year our fuel costs increased by over 60% or in real terms by over £300,000. This is a cost which the owning charity hasn’t been able to withstand. We urgently need to raise funds or we simply can’t afford the start up costs for this coming summer season.”
The Dry Dock 2023 Appeal has a target of £180,000 with over £35,000 already raised. 
Those who donate by 1st March will be entered into a draw to be selected for the unique opportunity to visit Waverley and see her out of the water in dry dock.
Paul added: “Operating a historic steamship like Waverley is inherently expensive. We are now spending over £600,000 a year just to maintain her in operating condition. Spare parts for a paddle steamer are rarely ‘off the shelf’ and come at considerable cost. 
"Dry docking the ship is the single largest expense of the winter maintenance work and as things are we can’t afford to dock her. We are asking for help from anyone who wishes to see Waverley sail again this summer to support our appeal.”
Donations to the Dry Dock 2023 Appeal can be made online at waverleyexcursions.co.uk or by calling 0141 243 2224.
Those donating online can opt to be included on a Virtual Donor Wall.