Home NewsLooking to the Future – A Message from our Chairman

Looking to the Future – A Message from our Chairman

Dear Friends,

2020 is at last drawing to a close. Good riddance I hear you say!

For Shieldhall and our loyal supporters it has not been a good year with the cancellation of our sailing programme and Covid lockdowns to contend with. Notwithstanding those challenges your Board has been busy transitioning the organisation to full charitable status and creating an operational structure that will enable us to develop our business plans for the future. Work to secure a permanent base for the ship at berth 110 has received positive reaction from ABP setting up new and exciting opportunities to expand our offering both for sailings and functions alongside.

Our volunteers have also been busy within the confines of social distancing, repairing, refurbishing and refreshing all parts of the ship to welcome passengers back on board. Such is our determination that Shieldhall will sail again in 2021.

As an absolute minimum, we know that we have to take the ship to dry dock early next year to ensure continuation of our passenger carrying certification. Once that is completed we have the plans in place to ensure the safety of our passengers and crew even if we find ourselves operating under the continuing restrictions of the pandemic.

Like all charities, the lack of income raising activity has hit us hard this year. Fortunately, we have secured some essential support from the Heritage Emergency Fund, which together with the reserves we have slowly built up over the years and full tanks of fuel mean that we can ride the storm in the short term. However, finding new sources of revenue is of paramount importance to our survival.

Joining the Shieldhall 50:50 Lottery is one way in which you can help us by being a part of the ongoing fundraising that is so essential to our future.

However positively we enter 2021, we know that we are faced with the challenges of increased regulation, high fuel costs and maintenance of a 65 year old steamship. Our best estimate is that we need to increase our current earnings capacity by some £50,000 every year. If every one of our members were to subscribe to just one entry in the lottery, or better still they get a friend or family member to sign up as well, we could substantially reduce or even eliminate that shortfall.

The 50:50 Lottery initiative is an exciting step forward for Shieldhall fundraising. The scheme is run entirely in house with no external administration fees. This means that all of the money raised goes to support the continuing operation of Shieldhall with 50% going to the ship and 50% returned to subscribers as monthly prizes.

Our determination is that Shieldhall will continue to bring the experience of passage by steamship for passengers old and new for many years to come. Help us to realise that dream by becoming a part of the Shieldhall lottery. Join now, in time for the first draw in December with a guaranteed first prize of £500.

Support Shieldhall – Join our Lottery – Be a Winner

John Rose

Steamship Shieldhall Charity