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Historic Maldon landmark gets £100k funding boost

By Ben Shahrabi

A woman on a boat
Steam Tug Brent Trust Chair Janet Hall is 'thrilled' by the grant award. (Credit: Ben Shahrabi)
An icon of Maldon's waterfront has won a huge funding boost of nearly £100,000 towards its much-needed restoration, securing it for future generations.

The Steam Tug Brent, which has been moored at Hythe Quay for more than half a century, has been awarded £97,488 by the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Originally used as a family home, the vessel has undergone restoration over many years, funded through public donations alone.

Janet Hall, who saved the vessel from being scrapped in 1971, is chair of the Steam Tug Brent Trust.

She said: "We're absolutely thrilled to receive this funding.

“It presents a tremendous opportunity - not only for the future of Brent, but also for the benefit of Maldon."

The Trustees are “immensely grateful” to the National Lottery for granting this award and have thanked “all those National Lottery players who have made it possible”.

It is the first major award that the Brent has received, which will fund an 18-month project to investigate how best to fully restore the vessel. Trustees plan to form partnerships with other local heritage and maritime organisations.

The trust hopes to build “a vibrant community centred on the Steam Tug Brent, while developing its potential as a training vessel and, eventually, a passenger-carrying vessel”.

Money from the National Lottery will help the trust make plans for a new jetty and pontoon, which it says are essential for allowing the Brent access to the Blackwater’s navigable channel, and for the berthing of visiting historic vessels.

A spokesperson for the Trust added: “The project will at the same time focus on embedding the historic vessel in the identity of the area’s maritime sector activities, whilst learning from other similar projects which currently run successfully.

“During this investigative period, there will be opportunity for members of the public and local organisations to make their contribution. The findings will be cascaded to all interested parties.”

For more information, visit the Steam Tug Brent Trust’s Facebook page.


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