SS SHIELDHALL is a classic steam powered cargo vessel, built in 1955, which has been preserved by a team of enthusiastic volunteers and today operates passenger cruises around the Solent (and sometimes further afield).
The operators of SHIELDHALL, Solent Steam Packet Ltd, do not have enough funds to complete the ship’s mandatory spring dry-docking, and have issued a plea for donations. They need in the region of £80,000 fast! – if the money cannot be raised, the ship will have to be laid up for at least the coming season, possibly longer, and could even be scrapped. The ship is a unique and a valuable asset to Britain's all too vulnerable maritime heritage.
If you can help, please do contact the company directly via http://www.ss-shieldhall.co.uk/
SHIELDHALL is included in the National Historic Ships Core Collection, and is generally recognised to be the largest working steamship of her type in Britain and probably Europe. Both boilers and triple expansion engines are original and it is interesting to note that they are similar, but on a smaller scale, to those fitted in SS TITANIC, giving the ship an interesting link with the past. The steam powered auxiliary machinery is also original. SHIELDHALL provides a reminder of the ship design philosophy and shipbuilding techniques of the 1950s and offers visitors the opportunity to experience the days of steam at sea and obtain a better understanding of the technology involved.