Western Lady to become floating museum in Torbay

11th July 2009, 08:42
THE historic Western Lady II ferry will become a floating museum when it returns to service in Torbay, the new owners have revealed.

The elegant ship was bought by the Greenway Ferry Company, which discovered the ferry rotting in Poole Harbour.

Renamed The Fairmile, the ferry is currently undergoing a 35,000 refit in Polruan, Cornwall, before returning to Torbay at the end of the month where she will carry passengers to Agatha Christie's former home at Greenway.

Will Ford, ferry company director, said the ship has become a 'minor celebrity' in the Cornish boatyard.

He said: "I am pleased to inform well-wishers things are back on track and going well.

"Currently there are 14 people working on the boat, including shipwrights, engineers, electricians and labourers, all working around the clock to get the vessel restored and back in service for later this month.



11th July 2009, 10:01
Wonderful news! This turns out to be Western Lady III which was purchased from Western Lady Ferry Service by Fairmile Classic Cruises and operated from Swanage in 2007/2008. The plan is to run her Torquay-Brixham-Dartmouth-Greenway.

Mark Taxis
12th July 2009, 03:29
Does anyone know what happed to the Wessex Belle, this was a fairmile, run as a day excursion boat in Poole harbour. It was purchased by the Brooks family in the 70's converted and used for charter work, I am not sure how long they owned it, but it must of been about 7 years, then it just seemd to disappear.
I spent a lot of time on this boat around the South coast of UK and the channel islands and would be interested to hear what happened to it.

30th September 2009, 09:23
Wessex Belle was arrested by Spanish Customs for carrying rather too much tobacco in Mallorca in Sept 1980.

Wessex Belle ex RML 499 was used as ferry Silver Commodore by Commodore Shipping in 1948 and in 1962 then sold to Croson Ltd who named her Swanage Belle and used her as a ferry from 1962 until 1973. She was re-named Wessex Belle in 1968. In 1973 she was bought for charter work by a Mr Michael Brooks in Poole.