Special Guest – David Suchet CBE

We are delighted that David Suchet CBE will be at the helm of Nutfield and Raymond at this year’s Braunston Historic Boat Rally Parade on Saturday 23rd June at 11:00am.

David is best known for his role as Agatha Christie’s Poirot for 24 years which earned him a British Film and Television Award (BAFTA) nomination. He is also a renowned in theatre work and is a published author.

Suchet also has a long association with the waterways and is vice-president of the Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Trust.  He was also officially voted in as chairman of the River Thames Alliance in November 2005.  At the July 2006 Annual General Meeting of the River Thames Alliance, he agreed to continue being chairman for another year. He is a Patron of the River Thames Boat Project.

We look forward to welcoming David aboard…

Photo source: Wikipedia

Raymond Restoration Update

Nick Lake visited Tess Wharf this week to meet Pete Boyce for an update on the work being carried out on Raymond.  The work will cost at least £2500 and is due for completion before the National Boat Share Show at the end of April 2018.

Here is Nick’s report:

The work’s coming on well – despite the inside of the cabin looking like a wreck (Pic 1 & 2)! The beams to support the deck in the hatches are in place (Pic 3) and Pete has repaired the rot in the shearing and knees (Pics 4 & 5). He’s also made new bearers for the step and was about to fit them (Pic 6). The next stage will be to fit marine ply on top of the framework, covered with a sealed membrane to keep the water out, and fix the deck planking on top of that.

One tricky problem Pete had encountered was that the T-stud was loose (I think it’s been loose for as long as I’ve been involved with FoR, like the starboard-side Anser shackle). It should have been a simple matter of tightening up the nut, which is at least accessible while the cupboard is removed (Pic 7). But the problem was that the bolt and its nut sit in a recess cut into the stern post with room only to get an open-ended 1¼ inch in (Pic 8).  Peter Copeland came to our rescue.  He was at Stowe Hill on Thursday and they very kindly offered to lend us some spanners. So, after a rummage through Stowe Hill’s bucket of old tools, I was back at Tess Wharf with a handful of rusty spanners, one of which fitted perfectly. And with a bit of scaffold tube for leverage… job done!

So many thanks to Pete (B) for his undeterred efforts and Peter (C) and Rob at Stowe Hill, for helping us out!

Pic 1: View to stern from Cabin

Pic 2: Wider view of cabin looking towards stern

Pic 3: Beams to support new deck and rotted timber replaced

Pic 4: Rotted timber replaced

Pic 5: More rotted timber replaced

Pic 6: New beams in place to reinstate the original step

Pic 7: T-stud tightened (view from below)

Pic 8: Pete Boyce still smiling despite the seemingly never ending discovery of rot! The good news is that his feet are on the boat floor, not the bottom of the canal….

Thanks for all your hard work Pete.

Photo Credits: Nick Lake

Trevor Maggs Funeral Service

A funeral service for Trevor will take place at Rainsbrook Cemetery and Crematorium, Ashlawn Road, Rugby CV22 5ET on Tuesday 20th February at 2.30pm.

Annual General Meeting Reminder

This year’s Annual General Meeting will be held at Braunston Marina on Sunday 4th February 2018, starting at 3pm.

All Friends and prospective Friends are welcome to attend.

For more information or apologies, please contact Robin Bishop by email at  secretary@friendsofraymond.org.uk

Sad News – Trevor Maggs

We are sorry to learn that Trevor Maggs past away this weekend.

Trevor had been a life long member of Friends of Raymond, towing Raymond in the early days to all the shows before we acquired Nutfield.  A couple of years ago we asked Trevor to take Raymond to the Rickmansworth festival as we were having work done on Nutfield, Trevor jumped at the chance and really enjoyed himself.

Thank you Trevor for all that you had done for us you will be truly missed by everyone.

A true gent of the cut.

Rest in peace Steerer Maggs

Photo courtesy of Nick Scarcliffe

Nutfield Restoration Work Update

August – November 2017

Nutfield was moved from Braunston Marina to Brinklow Boat Services (BBS) on the North Oxford Canal (www.brinklowboatservices.com) in August 2017.  BBS have been commissioned by the Trust to carry out remedial work on the hull and the manufacture and installation of new wooden gunwales in readiness for the fitting of protective cloths.

The work was planned in order to ensure the condition of the boat is maintained at a satisfactory level necessary to ensure the future of Nutfield is secure for years to come.  The fitting of cloths will provide both weather protection for the hold area and a covered area for the crew, particularly for those who sleep on-board during long boat moves and events.

The total cost of the work is circa £8000 which has been funded by existing Trust funds, private donations and a significant donation from the Northamptonshire branch of the IWA in memory of the late John Faulkner.

Hull Maintenance

A number of heavily corroded pieces of hull have been replaced to ensure that the integrity of the hull is maintained and that the condition meets with the requirements of our Insurers.  The process involves cutting out the corroded metal and welding in a new section.  This approach is preferable to “over plating” for both constructional and cosmetic reasons.

Once the cutting and welding work was complete it was time to grit blast the entire interior of the hull and baseplate to remove all the old paint and excess rust.  A professional grit blasting company was commissioned to do the work, our energetic Volunteers kindly assisted with removing approximately 3 tonnes of grit once the process was complete.

The freshly prepared hull surface was treated with two coats of high specification two part epoxy finish in a traditional red oxide colour.  This coating provides a high quality finish that will prevent corrosion for many years and will keep the interior looking smart.

Gunwales Replacement

After consideration and expert advice it was agreed that the existing oak gunwales were too narrow to accommodate the proposed new cloths.  Once the they were removed, BBS started the process of “truing up” the hull using the existing tensioning chains and acrow props where necessary.

When the hull was deemed to be as “true” as possible, the new gunwales were produced from iroko wood (an African hardwood which is very durable wood; iroko does not require regular treatment with oil or varnish when used outdoors).  The installation was completed using waterproof flexible sealant and coach bolts.  All coach bolt heads have been capped in wood to ensure a high quality finish on the top surface.

The new gunwales have been treated with a black pitch finish and fitted with rings in readiness for the fitting of cloths.

New Cloths (Future Planned Work)

The fitting of cloths will provide the necessary weather protection ensure that the work described above is protected and long lasting.

We have a costed proposal for the cloths and fitting (including new planks) which is approximately £4500.  This work will be commissioned when the Trust has raised the funds as there is insufficient money available at this time.

If you are able to support us in raising the £4500 required, we would be delighted if you could make contact with our Treasurer, Nick Lake.  Contact details can be found here.

Our thanks goes out to all Friends, Donors and Sponsors that have made this work possible and we look forward to your continued support.

Picture Credits: Brinklow Boat Services 2017

National Historic Ships UK – Photo Competition 2017


Now in the eighth year National Historic Ships UK’s Photo Competition is aimed at all photographers of all ages and dedicated to encouraging everyone to engage with historic vessels or maritime themes in their local area.

With two new categories and some great prizes including an Overall Prize of £1000 to be awarded on a theme or activity involving an historic vessel. Submissions for our contest are accepted online from 1st April until 31st August 2017.

Please use this link for further details about the competition:

If you would like one of our posters, please get in touch with us: or by phone 020 8312 8558.

Steve Tuckwell

It is with great sadness that The Friends of Raymond has learnt of the sudden passing of our Friend, Steve Tuckwell.

Steve was a familiar face and supporter of FoR and he will be greatly missed by all of our Friends, Officers and Trustees.

A service to celebrate his life will be held at All Saints Church, Braunston on Friday 21 April at 12 noon.  All canal friends and colleagues are invited to join the service and then at The Admiral Nelson for light refreshments.

Our deepest sympathy goes to Jan at this difficult time.

Raymond – Work in Progress – 30th March 2017

Some pictures at Blisworth this morning.

Raymond will have to come out of the shed on Saturday and be back at Braunston on Sunday so that Alan Baillie can finish off early next week.





Membership 2017

Without your continued support the Trust would not be able to operate and Nutfield and Raymond could not be maintained.

Our current Membership year ends on 5th April 2016 so if you are subscribed to our Friends email list you will receive a Renewal message shortly.

New Friends Welcome

If you would like to join us we would love to hear from you.  Please follow this link

As a Friend you may even want to Volunteer…

If so, please contact Diana at volunteering@friendsofraymond.org.uk

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