Belle of Bridlington ready for new season of sightseeing

PLEASURE cruiser Yorkshire Belle is set to steam back to her home port of Bridlington after undergoing her annual maintenance checks and refit.

The vessel has had a spruce up and oil and filter changes and a survey by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency at Hepworth’s shipyard in Paull, near Hull.

Final licks of paint will be applied when she arrives back in Bridlington ahead of the start of the new cruising season on April 1.

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She has carried generations of passengers up and down the East Coast since being built at the Cook, Welton and Gemmell yard in Beverley in 1947. She also plays a key role in the region’s burgeoning nature tourism industry, working with the RSPB to carry birdwatchers beneath the 400ft high chalk cliffs at Bempton, one of the most important seabird nesting sites in the UK.

Roy Simpson, who has been working on the boat with co-owner Peter Richardson and two members of crew, said she was also a nostalgic reminder for older visitors of the 1950s when six pleasure cruisers used to ply their trade from Bridlington.

People like to go out on her and other people just like to see her bobbing about in the harbour,” he said. “People come who used to remember the other boats there used to be in Bridlington.”