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Bridlington's dredger, Gypsey Race, was built in 1940 for Southend-on-Sea County Borough as the Prittlewell. During the war, she is likely to have kept the channels clear to the Thames Forts.
She became the Essex Lady in 1971 for Tartan Arrow Marine, then being acquired by Bridlington Harbour Commissioners in 1977.
Renamed the Gypsey Race, she was then extensively modernised and converted from Ruston to Volvo engines. Her two original Ruston Paxmans gave her a top speed of 7.5 knots. From 1985, she was used to dredge Bridlington harbour and she also carried out dredging along the East Coast from Eyemouth to Great Yarmouth. Later, she had more work carried out on her superstructure and deck plates.
Her hopper had a capacity of 85 cubic metres, carrying 150 tons of spoil. She was 30.74 metres in length and 7.93m wide. Her depth was 2.44m.
She left Bridlington in June 2010 and was broken up in New Holland.
This crest for the Bridlington Harbour Commissioners adorned the funnel of Gypsey Race. Was it kept or just casually discarded? Was the operation to remove it too costly, too time-consuming, was there nowhere to keep it, or wasn't anybody bothered? My guess is the last option.
Article By Mike Wilson