After more than three years tug Touchstone returns to Hermitage

Gates open 11am to 4pm on both Saturday and Sunday

Motor tug Touchstone will be arriving from Chatham Historic Dockyard to be open to visitors, there will be a pop-up cafe in the pier house and of course the resident live-aboard boats to view close up, mainly Dutch and English river barges, with one Norwegian coastal vessel (Hans) and all in navigable condition with either working engines or sailing rigs, or both. Come and find out from those who live here what it is like to live on board a barge on the river.

Tug Touchstone was built in 1962 on the Thames in Charlton so has its 60th anniversary this year. It was owned by Corys Tank Lighterage Company and worked the Thames and the Medway until 1994. Length 21m x beam 5.7m x  draft 2.3m. Engine Blackstone 517hp, gross tonnage 68. A great piece of Thames river history, in full working order.

Also, we have a special vessel coming from Germany 

Sailing / rowing cutter “Hannover-Spirit of Niedersachsen” will also be at Hermitage for a week, over the Open Days period. This is a very small boat (8,5m) doing a very big trip from Hannover across to Bristol, via the Thames and inland waterways, with a cargo aboard of a huge barrel of specially made gin (Hannover Gin – British Connection) and a tree for Bristol Botanical Gardens.

Spirit of Niedersachsen e.V. – Wir segeln für europäische Verständigung (