The fishing lugger, Barnabas, which was built in St Ives in 1881 and was launched an incredible 140 years ago from Porthgwidden beach – predating even the original Jumbos themselves! “Barnabas is an extraordinary survivor from the heyday of fishing; a living representative of St Ives’ maritime heritage her courtesy visit, planned for 2023, is a maritime equivalent of Stanhope Forbes visiting the Tate!” Jonny Nance, from the Jumbo Boats Association explains.
On Friday 18th November, from 7pm, St Ives Town Council will be hosting a special reception for the crew of the Barnabas at the Guildhall.
This re-scheduled event, which originally included a courtesy visit of the Barnabas to the town to mark the 140th anniversary, was planned as part of the celebrations organised by the St Ives Jumbo Association. Unfortunately, everything was cancelled following the death of Her Majesty the Queen. The visit of Barnabas will be in 2023. Further information will be released when a new date is decided.
During the reception there will be a brief presentation by former Mayor William Thomas, outlining Barnabas’ historical and family context.
Deputy Mayor, Johnnie Wells, will present her crew with a new tiller, the old one having broken in a blow whilst returning from the Scillies last year. Since that time, she has managed with the spare which, whilst functional, has none of the elegance or durability of the original.
With the financial support from St Ives Town Council and the Cornish Maritime Trust, the new 8ft tiller has been crafted by the builder of the Jumbos, Jonny Nance, from a naturally curved length of ash.
“A tiller is the piece of wood with which one effectively steers a boat and so this presentation will symbolise St Ives setting Barnabas on her course for the next 140 years!”
The Mayor of St Ives, Kirsty Arthur said,
“We are thrilled to be able to give a community grant to this project. Helping to preserve this beautiful boat ensures that we continue to celebrate our proud heritage and roots in the fishing industry, lest they are forgotten”
Photo caption: The new tiller for Barnabas will “set her on course for the next 140 years!”