Several options were discussed for example calling at Dunoon and then cruising down Firth rather than up Loch Long. The real idea for a Largs and Millport evening cruise came when it was apparent that Waverley would be terminating at Largs on the first 2 Thursdays in July and when you consider that she calls at Millport before Largs there was the golden opportunity to overlap the day cruise with an evening cruise. The cruise destination of North Arran added the "one-off" cruise factor which the committee hoped would make it a must do for enthusiasts and the general public alike. In the end the weather was the real icing on the cake and those lucky enough to be aboard got a night to remember. The final result is not yet known but it would appear that this charter will be hard to beat in terms of the funds raised. Once again we should all be grateful for the efforts of Waverley's crew and office staff who also helped make this a successful event.
Captain O'Brian took the steamer down the Western side of Great Cumbrae which meant that all passengers were given a cruise round Cumbrae in addition to the North Arran coast. After passing Garroch Head Waverley steamed direct to Arran. She then cruised from just North of Brodick Bay up the eastern coast passing Corrie until she reached the North end of the island. By the time she turned and headed down the Sound of Bute the sun was starting to lower in the evening sky creating an unforgettable image.
The following pictures were taken on Thursday but they don't fully capture the true atmosphere of the evening.
|Waverley approaches Largs Pier at the start of the cruise. (Gordon Wilson)|
|A very busy scene as 350 disembark while 480 wait to board giving the largest passenger transfer at Largs for some time. (Gordon Wilson)|
|Looking astern after leaving Largs. (Gordon Wilson)|
|The Clyde glistens in the evening light. (Roy Tait)|
|Millport Pier as Waverley departs having dropped off over 190 passengers - a great support from the town. (Gordon Wilson)|
If any other supporters have photographs from the charter cruise and would like to share them on this blog please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Further pictures below have been supplied by Ian McLaren following the request above.
|Waverley and the 2 Cumbrae ferries at Largs pier after the evening cruise. After all her passengers had disembarked Waverley made her way to Greenock for an overnight berth. (Charles McCrossan)|
My personal thanks to all who supported the cruise, assisted with the publicity and the on-board raffle.