Yesterday I took the kids to The Reach it’s a climbing wall complex, looks really good with 750 square meters of rope climbing and up to 450 square meters of bouldering, when we arrived we had to go through the normal HSE stuff, but when it came to actually climbing we couldn’t do it unless the kids could tie themselves off, so I asked if they could do the training to learn that skill, yes but it’s £35.00 each, I said thats ok I’ll pay, Oh but it’s a two day course next week, ok i said can i book them in, yes but only if an adult is with them, ok I said I’ll join to, oh ok I will have to check if you can? 10 mins later we started all over again with another person, eventually we paid a registration fee and admission and the kids were allowed to go bouldering only, while they were having fun I filled out forms, my son’s girlfriend had to ring her mum to get permission. I talked to the admin person and told her they had all been climbing before at the ‘Cave’ (Another rock climbing place) and that we came here because the Cave had closed, she told me the Cave was going to re-open and maybe we should go back there. Now I understand about HSE and all that, and I understand they have to cover themselves if anything goes wrong but throughout the whole time we were there it felt like they did not what us to join, If they just put up a sign saying 18 years and over it would of been so much easier.
Rant over, to cool down we had a walk along the Thames and found this.
The MV Royal Iris is a twin screw, diesel-electric, former Mersey Ferry. The vessel was built by William Denny & Brothers of Dumbarton (Yard No. 1448) and launched in December 1950, costing £256,000.
Her engines were produced by Ruston & Hornsby Metropolitan-Vickers. Propulsion: 4 oil 4SA, each six cylinders driving four generators, each 300 kW/300v DC-connected to two electric motors, each 730shp and 2 shafts. Her maximum speed is 12 knots. Her weight is 1,234 gross tonnes. She is 159 feet long and 48 feet wide, with a draught of 9 feet.
The Royal Iris ran her trials on the Skelmorlie Mile on the River Clyde on 24 April 1951. Arriving in the River Mersey on 28 April 1951, she was initially owned and operated by Wallasey Corporation and carried the Borough coat of arms on the front of her superstructure. Upon entering service on 5 May 1951, she was licensed to carry 2,296 passengers on normal ferry duties, or 1,000 for cruising. Originally painted in a green and cream livery, the ship was distinctive in having a forward dummy funnel near her bridge and two exhaust stacks amidships, on both sides. Onboard amenities included a dancefloor and stage, tea room, buffet, cocktail bar, even a fish and chip saloon. The latter likely affording the Royal Iris the nickname “the fish and chip boat”.
On Friday 7 September 1951 the battleship HMS Duke of York was under tow on her way to being broken up at Gareloch when she collided with the Royal Iris off Gladstone Dock. The Royal Iris was temporarily out of control and the floodtide carried her against the warship. The ferry was approaching the end of a cruise organised by the Amalgamated Engineering Union. Some people were hospitalised as a result of the accident.
In 2002 the vessel was towed to a berth on the River Thames near Woolwich, awaiting a possible refit as a floating nightclub.
On Saturday, 6 February 2010, it was reported that Police and the RNLI had been called out to her berth on the River Thames, near Woolwich, after a passing vessel noticed she had taken on water up to her passenger deck. At the present time, it is unclear how long she has been in this state. There was evidence found to suggest that squatters had been living on board. Also found on board were various items of drug paraphernalia.
The Kid’s though the sign ‘LADIES POWDER ROOM’ was so cool.
Both taken with my iPhone 4 with Camera+