In a case of third time lucky, volunteers dedicated to restoring a 1900 cockling boat and getting it back on the water have won a Lottery grant.
King’s Lynn Worfolk Boat Trust has been awarded £76,300 by the Heritage Lottery Fund at the third time of applying for support.
Tim Clayton, project leader and Lynn jeweller, said: “We have rescued the Baden Powell from gradual deterioration in past years.
“Now we can proceed at a faster pace with the restoration programme – in the town centre.
“By 2016 she will be good for another hundred years in the water, fulfilling a new role in the history of King’s Lynn and giving many people the new experience of seeing the town from the river to learn more about its history.
“King’s Lynn deserves its own historic boat.”
Once the 34ft wooden vessel is watertight, the plan is to move it to The Purfleet, next to Lynn Custom House, to complete restoration.
The trust then hopes to offer river trips to inform locals and visitors about the long and valuable contribution the port of Lynn made to the maritime history of Norfolk, East Anglia and the world.
As part of the project, young people will be introduced to the basics of woodworking and boatbuilding, in partnership with North Lynn Discovery Centre.
Then, in 2016, the Baden Powell will be offering sail training opportunities for youth groups.
Robyn Llewellyn, head of Heritage Lottery Fund in the East of England, said: “This is an excellent opportunity for the King’s Lynn Worfolk Boat Trust to rescue an important example of maritime heritage and help develop the skills of young people.
“Thanks to the enthusiasm of local volunteers, future generations will be able to view and sail on the Baden Powell, and more people will be able to learn about the local history of boatbuilding.”
Volunteers have been battling to secure the future of the Baden Powell since it was donated to Lynn’s Trues Yard museum around six years ago.
The boat was the first of more than 600 boats built in Lynn by the company started by Walter Worfolk. The business eventually became Worfolk Bros, with his sons Gerald and Bill carrying on a family tradition of wooden boatbuilding until the 1980s.
The trust now needs to continue its fundraising in order to raise around a further £20,000 needed to complete the project by 2016.
One of its fundraising activities is the sale of a CD featuring a recording of Bill Worfolk, available from Trues Yard, in North Street, Lynn.