A petition has been started to protect two historic boats in Hull Marina as they face having to pay full berthing rates.
The first HMS Pickle was a 1799 topsail schooner of the Royal Navy, which saw action in the French Revolutionary Wars and the Battle of Trafalgar.
A replica of HMS Pickle and fellow vessel Spider T, a 62ft Humber sloop that was part of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee flotilla on the Thames in 2012, are currently berthed in Hull Marina – but that might not be for long, with both berthing contracts set to expire.
The petition onwas created by Historic Motor and Sail, a company that acquires and restores historic vessels, in the hope of grabbing the attention of British Waterways Marina Ltd and Hull City Council.
With 24 signatures so far, the petition states: “The current berthing contracts for HMS Pickle and Spider T, currently berthed at Hull Marina, expires at the end of March 2018.
“After this date the vessels (both of historical value) will be forced to pay full rates which will make it untenable for the vessels to remain.
“Both vessels are registered as vessels of historical interest and attract a large number of visitors each year to the marina to see them. They are owned and maintained by Historical Motor and Sail, who are a not-for-profit organisation focused on maintaining the vessels for our generation and future generations.
“The organisation relies largely on donations and increased mooring fees would need to be drawn directly from funds that would be spent on maintaining the vessels.
“These funds are donated by people like you to save these amazing pieces of history for people like you.”
Several people have commented on the petition, saying: “History is fast disappearing, here is a chance to save it for once”, and “to allow these fantastic vessels to go elsewhere would be verging on criminal”.
The petition is calling on Hull City Council to consider the impact losing these vessels would have on local tourism.
The petition says: “This petition calls on British Waterways Marinas Ltd (the operators of Hull Marina) to consider a heritage mooring rate for vessels such as these and on Hull City Council to consider the impact that losing these vessels to another Harbour would have on local tourism and the local economy.
“Expressions of interest have already been received from a number of ports and harbours along the east coast who would all welcome the benefits that these vessels bring to the surrounding area.”
For further information and to access the petition, visit Change.org and search ‘Reduce mooring fees for HMS Pickle and Spider T at Hull Marina as heritage vessels’.
This article was originally published by the Hull Daily Mail.