Faversham Creek has a long local tradition of wooden boat, barge and shipbuilding over several centuries. In more recent times, the Faversham yard of James Pollock, Sons & Co Ltd was established to build a range of specialised coastal craft. Their steel vessels ranged from dumb lighters for use on the Thames to cargo barges, tugs, coasters and small tankers. It was also a pioneer in diesel propulsion and in the construction of concrete ships. The yard closed in 1970. It was taken over by Southern Shipbuilders until the late 1970s when it also closed.
Coastal Craft, Official Number 160630
Ink and watercolour, 30x20 cm, £65 including frame [Sold]
The tug Barking was built in 1928 by James Pollock, Sons & Co Ltd, Faversham, for the Gas Light & Coke Co. London. She was constructed as a motor tug, with a riveted steel hull and fitted with a 120 bhp Swedish Bolinder diesel engine. Her working life was spent on the Thames towing coal-laden lighters. By the late 1970s, she was derelict. She was bought, rebuilt, converted to coal-fired operation and relaunched in 2004. Barking is now owned by the ‘VIC 96’ Trust at Chatham Historic Dockyard and is a regular visitor to Faversham. She was a sister ship to Noni, built by Pollocks for the Faversham Navigation Commission. Noni worked as a motor tug in Faversham Creek from 1926 until 1942 when she was requisitioned by the Admiralty for war service.
Faversham Built, Faversham Registered
Coastal Craft, Official Number 186960
Oil on canvas, 40x30 cm, £145 including frame
Launched sideways on 22nd April 1955, the oil tanker BP Haulier was built by James Pollock, Sons & Co Ltd., Faversham. She was specially designed by Pollocks so she could motor up the creek stern first to take fuel oil to the Shell-BP depot on Faversham Creek. The flags - actually a signal code message which reads - ‘Shell Good Luck BP Haulier Mex BP’. She was the first British constructed tanker to be fitted with a ‘Voith-Schneider’ multi-direction propulsion unit which combined steering and propulsion in one unit. This meant that BP Haulier could manoeuvre easily in the shallow waters of the creek. Such was the significance of this event, it was even reported in 'The New York Times' of 23 April 1955! She was sold in 1975 and renamed Chrysanthy H. In 1976, she was operating in Greece carrying fresh water to the outer islands under the name of Niagaras.