Great-grandson helps remember shipyard history

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THE great-grandson of the founder of Cochrane’s shipyard officially opened an exhibition celebrating the former business which marked the end of Selby’s long-standing ship-building tradition when it closed.

Peter Cochrane, aged 91, is the great-grandson of Andrew Cochrane, who founded the yard at Selby in 1898. For nearly 100 years, Cochrane’s shipyard was a vital part of life in Selby and was one of the most significant employers in the district. The vessels built by Cochrane’s yard and launched sideways into the river Ouse varied from trawlers to tugs, tankers, offshore support vessels and ferries. When the yard closed in 1993, not only did it result in the loss of hundreds of jobs, but it also signalled the end of the shipbuilding tradition in Selby.

The exhibition, at Selby Abbey, runs until Friday and forms part of North Yorkshire County Record Office’s Heritage Lottery Funded project “Trawling Through Time”. It gives people the chance to view records from the archive of Cochrane and Sons of Selby. Following the exhibition at the abbey, a smaller exhibition will be touring the area’s local libraries. It will start at Sherburn in Elmet from November 13 to 17 before moving to Barlby between November 23 and 27, and then Selby from November 29 to December 8 and finally Tadcaster between December 11 and 15.