VOLUNTEERS who have spent hundreds of hours painstakingly restoring a Second World War torpedo boat have been recognised with a national award.
Paul Childs and the volunteers at Bridgwater’s Militaryboats CIC were awarded the Transport Trust’s Alan Moore Award for Preservation for their outstanding contribution to heritage restoration by the Transport Trust, for the MTB219 Project.
The Transport Trust is the only national charity established to promote and encourage the preservation and restoration of Britain's unique transport heritage in all its forms - by air, land (road and rail) and water (sea and inland).
Militaryboats’ Paul Childs was presented with the award, which came with an award prize of £1,000, by HRH Prince Michael of Kent during a ceremony at the Brooklands Motorsport Museum in Weybridge.
The volunteers, who are still working on the MTB219 project in Bridgwater Docks, were praised for their skills, determination and enthusiasm.
Paul Childs said: “It’s fantastic to receive such a prestigious award, and wonderful that the hard work of our volunteers has received national recognition – plus a generous donation to the project for the next phase of her restoration.”
MTB219 was lowered into Bridgwater Docks in February where she is awaiting the next phase of restoration including the finishing of the deck fittings, with replica torpedo tubes and Vicker’s .303 caliber machine guns.
“Once the deck is complete we can begin the interior fit-out; building the radio room, galley, Captain’s quarters and crew berths” explained Paul.
“We’re hoping that we will have enough funds to finish MTB219 by February 2017 which will be the 75th Anniversary of the “Channel Dash” when she received the Distinguished Service Order for combat against the huge German battle cruiser Scharnhorst and the might of the Luftwaffe.”
Donations towards the MTB219 Restoration and Museum can be made at www.militaryboats.org