Wednesday, June 24th, 2009
The Picton Castle family has just received the loveliest memento of our visit to Ipswich, United Kingdom, last September. This was another of our homecoming visits; the ship having wintered in Ipswich in 1993-94 en route to North America and her eventual conversion to a Class A tall ship.
Ipswich resident Des Pawson, one of the world’s leading authorities on knots and sailor’s ropework, had gotten to know Capt. Moreland during the months that the Picton Castle lay docked there. He and his colleagues at the Ipswich Maritime Trust encouraged the return visit, kindly assisting with arrangements including a variety of hospitality. And despite days of North Sea gales en route we managed to arrive just in time for a reception with the mayor on September 6.
The Picton Castle stayed at Ipswich for six days, attracting hundreds of residents to the city’s waterfront where they toured the ship, met our crew and apparently took a great many pictures.
And so it was that upon our departure the Maritime Trust came up with the idea of a photography exhibition to commemorate the visit. Together with the Ipswich Tourism Information Centre, they announced a competition, The People’s View of the Barque Picton Castle.
Says Mr. Pawson, “It was hoped that enough people would come forward with photographs to create an exhibition portraying the ship’s visit and that a selection of these photos could be sent to the Picton Castle as a gesture of thanks for the effort they made in visiting Ipswich.”
The contest was a huge success and the resulting exhibition, hosted by the tourist centre, was opened by the city’s mayor, David Hale, earlier this year.
Then just a few days ago, a package arrived at the Picton Castle‘s offices here in Lunenburg, Nova Scotia. Inside was an album containing the contest entries as well as messages from Mr. Pawson and Mayor Hale.
It is a treasured souvenir of the Picton Castle‘s Voyage of the Atlantic and our visit to Ipswich in particular, now displayed with pride in our offices.