Steamship Freshspring Deck Awning

by Steamship Freshspring Trust in Bideford, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 19th January 2020 we successfully raised £7,990 with 39 supporters in 55 days

The awning will make a fantastic covered space for a range of special events, disabled visitors and a variety of school group activities

by Steamship Freshspring Trust in Bideford, England, United Kingdom

INTRODUCING THE STEAMSHIP FRESHSPRING – ‘Preserving the past to inspire knowledge for the future’

Wouldn’t it be lovely to be able to enjoy the Steamship Freshspring, berthed alongside Bideford Quay in beautiful North Devon, whatever the weather? 


Sunday Visitors Open day Summer 2019

  • Built in 1946, she is the last surviving example of the Fresh Class of water carriers that supplied our Royal Navy.


SS Freshspring underway as a water carrier for the Royal Navy

  • Recognised as being of outstanding significance by National Historic Ships.
  • Freshspring is currently a static exhibit enjoyed by locals and tourists alike.
  • The Steamship Freshspring Trust is an educationally orientated charity which owns the historic vessel Freshspring.
  • Our aim is to both restore the ship to working condition and to use it as an educational resource.
  • Aimed at encouraging young people to consider a career in the maritime and engineering industries.
  • Here are children from Langtree School attending workshops aboard Steamship Freshpring:


  • Freshspring Exhibition stand at a school local event:



THE JOURNEY FROM 2013 - 2025


Steamship Freshspring in the reeds at a breakers yard in Newnham on Severn and today berthed at Bideford Quay

Our Timeline:


Visitors on deck as it is today. In future the new awning will provide cover from the elements.


  • To make the available space on board as useful as possible, we’re going to fit an enclosed awning over the deck. 
  • This will be custom built to fit the deck of the Steamship Freshspring and will look very much like this, represented on the ship's model on the river.


  • Followed by artists impressions of how the awning will look on deck:


  • The more events we can cater for on board, the more people we can engage with and the greater our chance of achieving our objective.
  • Our objective is that by 2025 the SS Freshspring will be fully restored to working order and a nationally recognised attraction, both as a maritime resource and as an educational facility and tourist attraction to North Devon.




Total Cost £7525

The majority of the preparation and decking work will be carried out by our volunteers, considerably saving funds.



  • A South West based UK manufacturer of awnings and structures has been selected and the design confirmed and costed.
  • Like many charitable organisations run by volunteers, for projects such as this raising funds can be a challenge.
  • There is an added incentive, if you donate £100 or more, we will display a plaque on the ship showing your name as a donor.
  • This will allow us to commission the build of the awning and carry out deck works to provide a fantastic covered space for a wide range of special events, for disabled visitors and school group learning activities.

To be part of this amazing journey to help Freshspring steam again, please kindly donate generously to support this project for the Awning.


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