A scale model depicting the one of the world’s oldest operational steamships has been gifted to its operators and will be on public display from next spring.
Lovingly hand-crafted by model enthusiast Mr Bill Peberdy, with the help of his great friend Mr Bill Sutton, the 4.5ft long model Steamship Sir Walter Scott has been entrusted to the Loch Katrine Visitor Experience at Trossachs Pier, the embarkation point from where tourists have sailed aboard the SS Sir Walter Scott for over 114 years.
Built on the Clyde by Denny Bros of Dumbarton in 1899, and sailing Loch Katrine since 1900, the 110ft Steamship Sir Walter Scott is one of the world’s oldest steamships still running a scheduled timetable. In 2009 the historically recognised vessel’s future was secured through an extensive renovation and restoration programme which saw the installation of new ‘clean’ bio-fuel boilers and the creation of a comfortable new lounge allowing panoramic views of the loch, a feature enjoyed by the thousands of visitors who sail aboard the steamship every year.
Now, a perfect scale model of the Sir Walter Scott – depicted as she was in 1992 – has been discovered and will be on display at the Trossachs Pier, Loch Katrine from next Spring.
The model Steamship Sir Walter Scott
Crafted from scratch more than 20 years ago, the ½ inch to a foot model SS Sir Walter Scott was created by retired Cheshire dentist Mr Bill Peberdy. A lifelong ‘modeller’, Mr Peberdy was introduced to the Sir Walter Scott during a trip to the Trossachs in 1991. Inspired by the steamship’s elegant Victorian lines and “completely bowled over” by her history, Bill determined to create a perfect scale model of the SS Sir Walter Scott and together with fellow model-enthusiast Bill Sutton, he set about researching the vessel’s layout, plans and construction. Six years of painstaking research and construction later, and the 4.5ft long miniature Steamship Sir Walter Scott was complete.
For over a decade, the model remained in Mr Peberdy’s workshop (his former dental surgery), and earlier this year his family suggested it be offered to the team at Loch Katrine. After a few repairs, the artefact has now been delivered to Trossachs Pier, where she will be placed on display from next year.
Mr Peberdy (86) said: “Our efforts were far more than just wanting to make a model of a ship. We were motivated by considerable affection for the vessel and indeed her crew, and made us determined to make as detailed and accurate a model as we possibly could. The model Steamship Sir Walter Scott is entirely hand made. Its hull required planking of 275ft of ¼ x 1/8 inch obechi wood cut to length and secured by fine brass nails. All in all, the model is made up of 5,493 pieces.
detail from the model Steamship Sir Walter Scott
Further detail from the model Steamship Sir Walter Scott
Mr Pebedery and family aboard the Steamship Sir Walter Scott
“I am pleased to see her go to a good home, indeed her rightful home, and hope that very many visitors to Loch Katrine will enjoying seeing her.
Gordon Allan, Managing Director of the Steamship Sir Walter Scott Ltd, added: “We are thrilled to receive this unique and wonderful artefact for the Steamship Sir Walter Scott. It is an incredibly intricate model and the detail is fascinating, all the more so as it depicts the steamship as she was in the late twentieth century. Having personally collected her from Cheshire, it is now wonderful to see “little sister” united with her older, bigger sibling here in Loch Katrine. She is, however, very fragile, and over the winter months we will determine how best she may be displayed and preserved, hopefully to have her on public display by spring of next year.
“On behalf of everyone at the Steamship Sir Walter Scott, I’d like to thank Mr Peberdy and his family for this kind and generous donation. I am certain his creation will be of great interest to visitors to Loch Katrine and the steamship for years to come. As a token of our thanks we offered to donate £1000 to the charity of Mr Peberdy’s choice and we were please to present this to the RNLI in Helensburgh.”
Last weekend, the Steamship Sir Walter Scott concluded her 2014 sailings with a special Pudsey Bear cruise for BBC Children in Need. The ship is now berthed for winter servicing, with sailings set to resume in mid March 2015. All details of the steamship, and other sailings on Loch Katrine, are available at
The Steamship Sir Walter Scott at Loch Katrine
Notes to editors:
Notes to Editor
1. The Steamship Sir Walter Scott Trust was established in 2005 with the support of the Scottish Government, Scottish Water, Scottish Enterprise Forth Valley, Stirling Council and The Loch Lomond and Trossachs National Park. Its establishment was the fulfilment of the Scottish Water Catchment Management Plan for Loch Katrine.
2. Loch Katrine is the key water supply for Glasgow, with the project opened in 1859 by Queen Victoria. The loch and area surrounding Loch Katrine was a favoured haunt of celebrated author Sir Walter Scott inspiring, amongst others, his epic The Lady of the Lake (1810). Loch Katrine is also the birthplace of Rob Roy MacGregor.
3. In 2009, a major renovation and refit of the Steamship Sir Walter Scott was completed combining 21st century passenger comfort with meticulous historic restoration, including the upgrade of the Steamship’s boilers enabling the original 1899 engine to operate on biodiesel.
4. Further details of the model Steamship Sir Walter Scott include:
• 63 stanchions and 66 portholes
• Anchor made of 21 individual pieces and winch of 48 pieces;
• 430 pieces make up the Bridge and a further 286 pieces make up the 13 seats;
• Two transparent deck panels under the bridge;
• Coiled hosepipe complete with brass fittings between the large ventilators;
• Black hook on the left ventilator to open the coal chutes;
• Boat hook at the prow on the port side;
• Two loudspeakers and wiring;
• Windscreen wiper on the bridge;
• Typewritten frame and glazed notice under the bridge facing forward;
• Steering cabin from the drum beneath the bridge to the pulleys at the stern;
• Two waste baskets – one up forward, and one to the rear of the Toilet block; 4
• Emergency Exit notices;
• Dinghy and contents;
• Brass plaque at the rear of the engine house;
• Door knobs on the inside of the bridge doors
• Yale lock to the shop door.
For further information please contact Carol MacInnes at Create Communications on telephone 01563 595001 / 07739 774091.